Taking care of your teeth isn't about making the dentist happy. It's about your quality of life.
While there are many elements of good oral health, four issues stand out far above all others-issues that can cause extensive dental treatment or possibly cause you to lose your teeth altogether. We discussed tooth decay in our first article in this Dental 101 series.
There are 4 important dental problems to watch out for, today we address gum disease:
PART 2: GUM DISEASE
You wouldn't build a house on sand, would you?
The foundation would be completely unstable. This is exactly what gum disease does-it destroys the foundation below your teeth. If this isn't caught in time, they can become loose and possibly fall out.
Gum disease (also called periodontal disease) doesn't just affect your ability to keep your teeth, but also your overall health. The same bacteria that had been found to cause infections in the mouth has also been found in the hearts of patients who have had heart attacks and strokes. Healthcare professionals refer to this as the Mouth-Body connection, and often a dental check-up and clean bill of oral health is required before major surgeries, such as a hip replacement or a heart bypass.
And as incredible as it may sound, once gum disease has progressed to a certain point, it can require actual surgery done by a specialist to cut open the gums so as to reach the bacteria which has lodged itself deep inside the tissue of your gums and is eating away at the roots of your teeth and even the bone of your jaw. Often the teeth can't be salvaged anymore and require surgical extraction. Even replacement of teeth(implants) due to gum disease requires more extensive dental work than usual as the bone is gone and there is little to no area to place the implant.
Given that about half of Americans aged 30 or older have periodontitis, the more advanced form of Gum Disease, it is no longer the mild issue it once was decades ago. It is pretty serious as there is just too much data being accumulated that connects infections of the Mouth to many, many other problems of the Body.
The simple truth: For all that, if caught early enough, it is very easy to treat with routine cleanings every 3 months, sometimes a local antibiotic can be placed to prevent the bacteria from growing, and there are even special mouth rinses and even tooth brushes designed specifically to handle these issues.
If you have some further questions about gum disease, or want to know what to do about periodontal disease, please contact StarBrite Dental at (301) 770-1070 , and someone in the office will help you.