Preventing gum disease in Indianapolis, IN with proper dental care
Gum disease is not just a serious oral health condition, but is often interrelated to overall physical health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and rheumatoid arthritis. Gum disease is a progressive infection, with the milder version known as gingivitis.
Early signs of the potential development of gum disease are subtle and not always noticeable. Typically, gingivitis presents as problems with the gums, such as increased sensitivity, redness, inflammation, and bleeding during or after flossing or brushing. If gingivitis is left untreated or undetected, advanced symptoms of periodontitis may include:
- Gums pull away and recede from teeth, making the teeth look longer
- Chronic and prolonged halitosis or a unpleasant taste
- Loose or shifting teeth
- Changes in bite
- Irritated gums that may include pus
- Tooth loss
While treatment for gum disease, especially in early stages, can be effective, Dr. Matthew Church and our professional dental team at Washington Street Dentistry believe that the best course of action is always prevention. Because plaque that accumulates on the teeth harbors the bacteria that lead to periodontal disease, a routine and effective oral hygiene regimen is critical. This includes:
- Have a trusting relationship with your dentist – the most important factor in optimal oral health is to visit the dentist once or twice per year for professional cleaning, oral health screening, and examination and evaluation of changes that may be occurring in the mouth, teeth, gums, and tissues
- Be aware of risk factors – smoking and use of tobacco is a leading cause of gum disease. Other factors, such as genetics, nutrition, and underlying health conditions, can influence a person’s susceptibility to gingivitis and periodontitis
- Brush twice daily – using a gentle circular motion and the appropriate, dentist-recommended toothbrush and toothpaste, address each tooth individually
- Floss daily or after meals – debris can become trapped between teeth and plaque can accumulate before being apparent to the eye. With an up and down movement, flossing can reduce plaque and remove food pieces that may be caught
- If recommended by the dental team, a mouthwash or rinse may remove food particles that are loosened with flossing and brushing
Washington Street Dentistry serves patients and their family members of all ages from the greater Indianapolis region. For more information regarding the prevention and treatment of gum disease, call us today at (317) 333-6788 for a comprehensive consultation.