You probably know you’re supposed to take care of your teeth, but sadly, gums are often an afterthought when it comes to people’s oral hygiene routines. So perhaps it’s not surprising that gum disease — or periodontal disease — is so widespread in the United States, with half of Americans over the age of 30 afflicted, according to the CDC.
Gum disease often presents no symptoms in its earliest stages, which is just one reason why it’s so important to visit Nashua Family Dentistry every six months. We will be able to spot the signs very early, which means treatment will be easier and less invasive. To schedule your checkup, call our Nashua, NH office at 603-546-7460 or fill out our online form.
Gums Keep Your Teeth in Place
Without gums to hold them in place, your teeth would fall right out of your mouth. Gum disease is an infection of the gum tissue. Early symptoms may include tenderness, redness, and bleeding. Left untreated, your periodontal disease may cause the gum tissue to recede from the teeth. Eventually your beautifully pearly whites will loosen and fall out.
Gums Contribute to Your Beautiful Smile
As humans, we place a lot of stock in smiles. They are important to making that first impression, and they may exude self-assurance and friendliness or self-consciousness. When your gums are swollen and bleeding, or your teeth have fallen out due to gum disease, it’s difficult to have confidence in your smile.
Gum Disease Is Associated with Heart Disease
Your mouth is not a closed system. Gum disease is an inflammatory disease of the gums generally caused by bacteria. Research is showing that periodontal disease may increase a person’s risk of heart disease by 20%. This is likely due to the inflammation spreading to other parts of your body and contributing to the narrowing of the arteries.
Gum Disease Is Associated with Diabetes
Gum disease and diabetes have a complicated relationship. It’s well known that people with diabetes are highly susceptible to developing gum disease — likely because they have compromised immune systems, making them at high risk for infections overall. And gum disease may increase diabetics’ blood sugar, putting them at an increased risk of developing diabetic complications.
So how do you keep your gums healthy, anyway? Here are a few tips:
- Practice good oral hygiene. When you brush (which you should be doing twice a day), be sure to pay attention to the gumline. When you floss, clean under the gumline.
- Get your folic acid, which promotes gum health. Leafy greens are a great source.
- Rinse away bacteria and food particles with an antiseptic mouthwash.
- Do not smoke. Smoking increases your risk of developing gum disease, and makes it difficult to treat.
- Visit the dentist every six months for a cleaning and exam.
If you’ve noticed bleeding or other gum disease symptoms — or you are due to see us for your regular checkup, call Nashua Family Dentistry of Nashua, NH at 603-546-7460. Or fill out our online form and request an appointment.