You’ve heard it your whole life: brush twice a day, floss every day, and visit the dentist regularly. Those are the basics of great oral hygiene, and we all know how important it is to keep your teeth clean. Further, you know that not taking care of your teeth will result in cavities, but did you know it can also lead to serious gum disease? One of the main risk factors for gum disease is poor oral health, and today we’re going to tell you all the things you need to know about the subject.
Good Oral Hygiene Can Prevent Gingivitis
One of the most prevalent types of gum disease is called gingivitis, which is characterized by a swelling of the gums. Here’s how it happens: when you don’t brush your teeth regularly or adequately, plaque builds up on your teeth and around your gum-line. Plaque contains bacteria, so when you don’t routinely remove the plaque with brushing, the bacteria that live here multiply and irritate your gums, which is known as gingivitis. Other symptoms of gingivitis include:
- Sensitive teeth
- Bad breath
Preventing Gingivitis Can Stop You from Developing Periodontitis
Periodontitis is a more severe form of gum disease, and one of the leading causes is untreated gingivitis. Periodontitis has many of the same symptoms as gingivitis, but the stakes are much higher. For one thing, untreated periodontitis can cause bone loss, receding gums, loose teeth, and even tooth loss. Furthermore, periodontitis has been linked to health problems elsewhere in the body, including heart disease, diabetes, and more. Periodontitis has even been associated with premature births and low birth weight, so it’s even more important for pregnant women to take care of their oral health.
The Fundamentals of Good Oral Hygiene That’ll Stop Gum Disease
Good oral hygiene involves regular brushing, flossing, and trips to your Nashua dentist, but it’s more involved than that. For instance, when you brush your teeth, brush in small circles (instead of from side to side), and don’t forget your tongue and the roof and sides of your mouth. You should brush your teeth once throughout the day, and then again right before bedtime. Throughout the day, you can protect your mouth from cavities and enamel loss by rinsing your mouth with water after eating and drinking, especially if you’ve had acidic or sugary foods. Finally, make sure you change your toothbrush every three to four months because this will prevent the spread of bacteria.
Gum diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis may be common, but they’re also highly preventable, and the key is good oral hygiene. Although inflammation of the gums may not seem serious, gingivitis can cause periodontitis, which can lead to tooth loss and other problems. As such, it’s essential to cultivate and practice good oral hygiene habits every day since the health of your teeth, mouth, gums, and body depend on it.