Serving Brentwood, Belle Meade and Green Hills Areas of Nashville TN
Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss among adults in the U.S. According to the CDC, most men and women have some form of gum disease that can cause future oral health damage or tooth loss. The severity of gum disease varies for each patient from mild to advanced conditions and will only increase in severity if it is not treated. Since February is Gum Disease Awareness Month, Devine Dentistry of Nashville has brought you a few tips on what causes gum disease and why it requires a deep clean to restore your oral health.
The Causes of Gum Disease
The main cause of gum disease is bacteria which are always present in your mouth. However, when you introduce other substances such as food and sugary drinks, the sugar feeds the growth of the bacteria. When you brush your teeth twice a day and floss a minimum of once a day, you remove most of the bacteria from the surface of your teeth. Unfortunately, some bacteria remain behind and find sticky plaque deposits or hardened tartar to adhere to. The areas that are most susceptible to harboring bacteria are along the gum line, between teeth, or in the back of the mouth, where it is difficult to clean.
As the bacteria feed on the sugars and foods we consume, they release acids that negatively affect the enamel on the teeth as well as the gums. Your body’s natural response to the presence of bacteria is that the gums will begin to recede from your teeth. Within time, the gums will recede and form pockets at the base of your teeth, which then provide easy access for bacteria to enter your bloodstream. This leads to significant inflammation and pain. In addition, the bacteria can spread through the mouth, causing additional problems throughout your body, such as an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke, and diabetes. Regular tooth brushing and flossing cannot clean these pockets, which mean that professional dental treatments are the only way to manage advanced stages of gum disease.
Treating Gum Disease
Gingivitis, the first stage of gum disease, can be easily managed by improving your at-home oral care through brushing a minimum of twice daily, flossing daily, and visiting your Green Hills dentists at Devine Dentistry, a minimum of twice per year for regular cleanings. When using proper care, it is highly probable that you can reverse this stage of gum disease.
On the other hand, in the event you have advanced gum disease or periodontitis, a deep cleaning is precisely what will remove most of the bacteria and help improve the health of your gums. By using special instruments to get below the gum line, the colonies of bacteria can be removed to keep future infections from occurring. Also, plaque or tartar will be removed from your teeth to reduce the risk of cavities. Sometimes oral antibiotics or a special mouth rinse may be prescribed by your professional dentist in Belle Meade to combat the presence of bacteria and manage gum disease. After your treatment, you will notice the inflammation subside, reducing pain and sensitivity. Your gums may heal, although gum recession will not reverse. Professional dental treatments, however, can manage your gum disease, preventing it from returning or becoming worse.
Know Signs of Gum Disease
During the early stages of gum disease, gums appear red, inflamed, and may bleed easily. The condition can be reversed at this point. However, advanced stages present symptoms of receding gums, chronic bad breath, and loose teeth. The best way to know if you have gum disease is to schedule an appointment with Devine Dentistry. Feel free to call us at (615) 269-4209 today to schedule a consultation.