Gum disease is highly prevalent in modern society, and yet so many people are unaware of how serious it can be—if they are aware that it exists at all. For those who have heard the term, many have false information stemming from a variety of myths surrounding the topic. So, to set the record straight, talk to your periodontist serving Middletown and take look at these myths and the truths behind them.
Myth: I’ll only get gum disease if I don’t brush my teeth.
While twice daily brushing and once daily flossing, along with regular visits to the dentist, are certainly high on the list of ways to prevent gum disease, poor oral hygiene is not the only cause or risk factor. In particular, lifestyle choices such as tobacco use, maintaining a poor diet, and even staying under a lot of stress can contribute greatly to gum disease. There are also individuals who seem to have a genetic predisposition to develop the condition.
Myth: It’s normal for my gums to bleed a little every now and then when I brush.
This is less of a myth and more of an outright lie. Bleeding gums are never normal. While circumstances other than gum disease may cause your gums to bleed, such as overly aggressive brushing, gum disease is by far the most common cause. Even if they don’t bleed, if your gums are at all swollen, red, or sensitive, you should schedule an appointment with a periodontist right away to determine the cause.
Myth: I’ve already lost my teeth to gum disease, so there’s no point in seeing the dentist anymore.
Whether you’ve lost one tooth or all your teeth, all hope is not lost and your gum health is still incredibly important. As long as your gums are healthy, a periodontist may be able to give you a new lease on your smile with dental implants. Even if you choose not to get implants, however, it’s important to note that healthy gum tissue is still needed to support dental fixtures such as dentures, as well as any remaining teeth you might have.
If you are not happy with your smile, but you feel that braces would be too much of a hassle, then consider Invisalign. Invisalign is a revolutionary orthodontic solution that brings you the transformative power of braces—without the braces! For more information about Invisalign teeth straightening in Middletown, including to find out if you’re a good candidate, contact your family dentistry provider.
Because Invisalign uses a series of clear plastic trays to gently coax your teeth into a proper alignment, most people will never even realize you are undergoing treatment. Moreover, since they are completely removable, you do not have to spend extra time brushing or flossing, nor do you have to worry about cutting out any of your favorite foods during treatment. Finally, you will typically only need to see your dentist once every six weeks rather than the once-per-month scheduling that is common with metal braces.
Have you ever talked to your dentist or periodontist about gum disease? If he or she hasn’t mentioned it to you, that’s a fairly good sign. However, if you aren’t in the habit of visiting your dentist regularly, you could have gum disease and not know it. Gum disease is entirely preventable, yet extremely common. If you are past due for a hygiene appointment, or you think you may have gum disease near Middletown , please contact your periodontist. Here’s a look at how gum disease progresses, and what you should look out for.
In this earliest stage of gum disease, your gums become inflamed. They may be tender, red, or swollen. You might
notice that your gums bleed
easily, especially right after you brush your teeth. Bad breath is not uncommon. Fortunately, gingivitis is simple enough to reverse—just be extra diligent about brushing twice per day and flossing once per day. Brushing and flossing after each meal isn’t a bad idea, either.
If diligent oral hygiene fails to reverse gingivitis, or if it is simply allowed to progress, gum disease goes into its second stage— periodontitis . In this stage, pockets begin to form between the teeth and the gums, and damage to the supportive tissue and bones around the teeth begins. You may require extra treatment from your periodontist in addition to specialized and diligent at-home hygiene.
When gum disease progresses even further, it becomes advanced periodontitis. This is not a position you’ll want to find yourself in, as the gums’ supportive bone and tissues erode away completely. This process allows the teeth to become loose and shift, and in worst cases, tooth loss will occur. If you do avoid tooth loss, your teeth may still shift out of alignment, which may need to be corrected after aggressive treatments get the gum disease under control. If these treatments fail, however, tooth extraction may be necessary in order to stop the spread of disease to the rest of your body.
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