Many people believe gum disease affects the gum tissue only. Unfortunately, this disease affects more than just your gum tissue. While bleeding and swelling are common, gum disease can also cause bad breath, pain, and the loss of multiple teeth. Thankfully, prevention is possible with proper understanding and a bit of effort. Here are a few simple solutions to consider if you want to protect your smile and underlying health from gum disease.
1. Brush and Floss
It may seem obvious, but brushing and flossing your teeth are crucial steps if you want to have a healthy smile. While shocking to learn, most people are not brushing effectively, which means food, bacteria, and plaque will build up and linger on the teeth and gum tissue.
Experts recommend brushing twice a day for two minutes at a time. In addition, flossing at least once a day is necessary. Replacing your toothbrush if it appears dirty or worn is also crucial for preventing the buildup of bacteria in the bristles. This can also help prevent gum disease.
2. Eat Well
Your diet is important for your physical health, but it is also important for your oral health. Avoid sugary, sticky foods that could build up on the teeth and gum tissue. If you have cavities already, the sugar will seep into the interior of the tooth, causing cavities and decay that will eventually spread into the gums.
Increase your intake of vitamin-rich foods, such as spinach, kale, and blueberries, which offer antioxidants that reduce inflammation while boosting the body's immune system. This can help your body fight off dangerous infections, such as decay and gum disease.
3. Take Supplements
Eating a vitamin-rich diet each day can be challenging for some people, but you can still improve your health and wellness by taking supplements. One of the best vitamin supplements to add to your daily regimen is vitamin C.
Vitamin C strengthens your immune system, helping you fight off gum disease, but it also has anti-inflammatory properties that heal inflamed, swollen gum tissue.
Be sure to talk to your doctor before taking any new vitamin supplements.
4. Visit the Dentist
You may think you brush, floss, and eat well, but these tasks may not be enough for preventing gum disease.
Dentists recommend periodic checkups for a few reasons. These checkups help your dentist see how well you are brushing and flossing, which can be beneficial for teaching you how to care for your oral health in a more effective manner.
Dental checkups also include cleanings, which is a more involved removal of food, bacteria, and plaque. By removing this buildup early, your dentist can help reduce your risk of developing gum disease.
Remember that gum disease is a progressive disease, so early intervention is imperative. The sooner your dentist discovers you are in the early stages of the disease, the sooner treatment can begin to stop the disease from progressing.
5. Quit Smoking
Finally, you need to understand how smoking cigarettes and using tobacco products can affect your smile. The nicotine in cigarettes and chewing tobacco can actually eat through tooth enamel and gum tissue. This leads to food and bacteria building up and causing decay and gum disease.
Also, smoking and chewing tobacco can dry out the mouth. Without a good amount of saliva, the mouth will become a potential breeding ground for bacteria that cause gum disease.
Your oral health is important, but you may not be placing enough time or energy into caring for your mouth, teeth, and gums. With this guide, you will learn a few simple yet effective solutions for preventing gum disease.