What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease affects many people all over the world. It involves inflammation, soreness or infection of the gums. There are two stages of gum disease, gingivitis and periodontitis. Gingivitis is the first stage where the most prominent symptoms are bleeding of the gums and swelling. If this stage isn’t treated the result may be periodontitis where the symptoms may include (all or some of) halitosis (bad breath), teeth that are loose, a bitter and unpleasant taste in the mouth and/or pus developing within gums and creating abscesses.
What do you do if you fear that you have gum disease?
This is not a problem that you want to prolong before making an appointment with your dental professional and initiating treatment. If you notice that there is a constant issue with your teeth, then do not for one minute hesitate and promptly make an appointment with your dentist. If this issue prolongs, there is a risk of teeth falling out and with the risk of infections developing causing discomfort, or the chance of throbbing toothaches and having a tooth fall out mid-meal…. this won’t look good look.
Of course between making the appointment and actually going, you may not be able to get an immediate appoint so there are a few things you should do so that you are taking control to prevent the situation from worsening. However, without seeking professional medical advice, the issue cannot be diagnosed so do seek medical advice as soon as possible.
Oral hygiene is paramount. Perhaps your hygiene has been good or perhaps it has been less than satisfactory. Now is not the time to sit and regret, it is the time to take positive action to help your oral health.
How to manage Gum Disease at home?
1) Brush your teeth at least twice a day and particularly after your last meal of the day. The food and drink that you consume does affect your teeth. Certain foods and drinks that are acidic or sugary will wear away at the enamel on your teeth. Using a fluoride toothpaste will help with protecting from tooth decay.
2) Floss! Floss! Floss! Flossing will pick up the little food particles that brushing just can’t. Any debris of food that stay in the vicinity of your mouth and particularly in and around your teeth are a detriment to your oral health. Flossing is just like having a little dust pan and brush in your home. It’s not a hoover but it’s always a more content feeling knowing that you brushed up that pile of dust, or fallen mess and it’s a cleaner feeling. Except with flossing you get that clean feeling in your mouth.
3) Use a mouthwash. There are so many mouthwashes. So many. They come in different flavors, colors, sizes and sensitivity ranges. Some may contain alcohol but it really isn’t difficult to find an alcohol-free mouthwash. You can look at the supermarket, the drug store. If you are suffering from sensitive teeth then be sure to pick one from the sensitive teeth range. There’s no excuse not to use one.You can’t just replace teeth like you can with a fake eye-lash.
4) Visit your dentist regularly. Make an appointment every six months or at the very least annually. This is for everyone whether you have the perfect set of teeth or not. Cavities, small cracks, yellowing of the teeth are all naggling problems that could be manifesting (among others) and of course preventing, managing or treating gum disease and just being in control knowing the health of your teeth is an important reason to visit the dentist. If there is a problem, your dentist will let you know and if there isn’t then that’s super news.
There are many other factors that will help your oral health which include (but are not limited to) reducing your sugar intake, reducing your acidic consumption and not smoking. With regards to acidic consumption, specifically drinking Orange juice or soda, the direct impact of such acidic drinks is softening of the enamel and so brushing straight after drinking acidic drinks is very important. Though the damage to the teeth isn’t a one day process but a slow process. Continually ignoring the health of your teeth is a serious matter because you are only given one set of teeth, an upper and a lower arch. Replacing those teeth is an expensive business. You do not want to be in that position if you can prevent it. There are also other health benefits associated with these ideas so it may be worth doing the research and having the conversation with your dentist and/or GP to understand about this more in depth.
Professional Dental Treatments
It may be required to have actual physical treatment at the dentist. These treatments include:
1) Scale and Polish – This is where your dentist gives your teeth a thorough cleaning removing plaque and “dirt” from your teeth, with the polish used to give your teeth a shine with a view to removing stains and such.
2) Debridement – This is a more intrusive procedure but if it’s necessary the right one. It involves a thorough clean under the gums. The bacteria that sits under there is a menace to your oral hygiene. This procedure is a direct route to eradicating the menace of the bacteria.
3) Surgery – This may include the extraction of a tooth. It’s not what you would want in an ideal situation but at this point you wouldn’t be in an ideal situation. The extraction of the affected tooth would be an immediate solution to the symptoms. It is best to visit your dentist immediately to try to avoid this stage.
Stay in Control
If someone has a pain in a part of their body or a discomfort they will see their doctor. If a car has a fault you call the mechanic. If your kitchen is flooded, you’re on an immediate mission to find the number. When you have an inkling and a feeling that there is an issue with your teeth, do not hesitate to make that appointment. Stay in control. If you do have gum disease, there is no point sitting in despair. Make changes and mange your oral hygiene.