Gum disease is surprisingly common amongst adults, more so in men than women. Gum disease ranges from mild conditions, such as gingivitis, to more serious conditions like periodontitis, which can result in tooth loss. Gum disease occurs when plaque is allowed to harden around the tooth, forming tartar than can only be removed by a dentist. When plaque and tartar are not removed with dental cleaning, teeth and gums become infected, increasing the risk of gum disease. Therefore it is always recommended to visit your dentist on a regular basis.
Here are the essential facts that you need to know about gum disease.
People who are at risk of gum disease include:
- Women and girls experiencing hormonal changes
- Someone who is diabetic
- Someone who suffers from other illnesses
- Someone who uses certain medications
Signs of gum disease include:
- Persistent bad breath
- Red, swollen gums
- Bleeding gums
- Sensitive teeth
- Receding gums
Helpful steps that should be taken to prevent gum disease include:
- Brush your teeth properly, twice a day
- Floss every day
- Rinse your mouth with mouthwash every day
- Schedule regular check-ups with your dentist
- Do not smoke
Fortunately, gum disease can be reversed if treated in the earlier stages. Problems only arise when it is left untreated, as gums recede from the teeth, creating pockets that allow plaque to grow below the gum line and causing infections and ultimately destroying the bone, gum and tissue. Therefore, if you are experiencing any of the above mentioned symptoms of gum disease, schedule an appointment with your dentist immediately. Contact us for a dentist in Cape Town.