Forty-seven percent of adults over age 30 have periodontitis, an advanced form of gum disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control. That percentage increases to 70 percent among adults ages 65 and older. Anyone can develop gum disease throughout his or her life. Therefore, it is critical to understand the symptoms and risk factors of the disease. Fortunately, excellent oral health care can help prevent the disease and ensure the smile remains healthy and beautiful. Respected dentists Drs. Lan Vo and Sean Breckley at 32 Dental are happy to educate patients in Acworth, GA and the surrounding areas about the importance of good oral hygiene.
Gum disease usually develops in the areas of your mouth that you may have neglected to brush or floss. As a result, bacteria build up forming a sticky film called plaque. The body responds to the bacteria with an inflammatory response. This can lead to swelling of the gums, which is a warning sign of gingivitis. Other symptoms include gum redness, bleeding when brushing or flossing, a receding gum line, bad breath, mouth sores, and loose teeth. Eventually, the inflammation can become more destructive. The tissues and bone that support the teeth begin to break down. This leads to gums pulling away from the teeth, leaving pockets where bacteria can grow. As you lose bone, the teeth become looser and eventually fall out.
Who is at risk of gum disease? Individuals who use tobacco products are pregnant, have a family history of the disease, have diabetes, grind or clench their teeth, and have high stress are at highest risk. Heart medications, antidepressants, and birth control can increase the risk of the disease. Therefore, it is important to tell our team about any medications you currently take. To reduce your risk of gum disease, we recommend avoiding or quitting smoking or chewing tobacco. For teeth grinding and clenching, we can provide mouth guards to wear at night. Prevention is critical to prevent plaque buildup and keep gum disease at bay. We recommend:
- Brushing your teeth at least twice a day, or sometimes, after every meal
- Cleaning between the teeth and gums by flossing before bedtime
- Using an antiseptic mouth rinse after brushing your teeth in the morning and at night
- Visiting 32 Dental at least twice a year for examinations and teeth cleanings
Is it time for your dental check-up? The 32 Dental team can develop a treatment plan that addresses your family history and lifestyle habits to ensure optimal oral and overall health. Schedule an appointment today by calling (770) 423-1132.