Maintaining your gum health prevents uncomfortable, painful, and unsightly cases of gum disease. Regular visits to your family dentist in Columbia, MD aids in the prevention of gingivitis and improved oral care.
What Is Gum Disease?
Gum disease, or the early stage of gingivitis, is an infection of the gum line. It begins with a build-up of bacteria from leftover food particles. This combination turns into plaque, the sticky substance created by bacteria. Without proper oral hygiene and dental care, the acids and bacteria eat their way into the gum line.
Early signs of gingivitis include gums that are:
- Red and swollen
- Bleed easily
When gum disease becomes more severe, the infection spreads through the gums, and possibly into the bone. Gum disease is one of the major causes of tooth decay.
The severe stage of gum disease is periodontitis. If one fails to see a periodontist, the disease causes major issues to your gums, bone, and mouth tissues. Symptoms lead to problems with biting and chewing. At this point, multiple teeth extractions could be necessary.
What Do Healthy Gums Look Like?
Healthy gums are pink, firm, and fit snugly around the crown of the teeth. Also, they won’t bleed or cause pain when brushing and flossing.
5 Ways to Improve Gum Health
Practicing the best oral care routine will prevent an unhealthy build-up of plaque and tartar. Improving and maintaining your gum health provides a healthy smile, functionality, and the prevention of other chronic health issues. General dentists recommend the following techniques for healthy gums.
1. Teeth Brushing
It is commonly known to brush your teeth twice a day. However, to improve your gum health, you should brush your teeth after every meal. This way, the plaque and particles of food don’t sit as long between your teeth and around your gums.
For a bigger impact on your oral health, use a fluoride toothpaste to reduce the risks of gum disease.
With the help of technology, from electric toothbrushes to games on apps, you can brush your teeth properly and make it fun. There are even subscription services that regularly mail you new toothbrushes.
To remove the particles between your teeth, you need to floss. This should be done at least once a day. Flossing is a way to get to those hard to reach places that are missed when brushing your teeth.
Using mouthwash is a great way to kill excess bacteria around your gums, teeth, and soft tissues. There are many options to choose between, such as daily antibacterial and advanced periodontal formulas. Combined with regular teeth brushing and flossing, mouthwash keeps your teeth and gums healthy.
Call 410.690.4855 for a dental exam and see what mouthwash routine is best for your oral habits.
4. Professional Teeth Cleanings
Most people need to visit a dentist twice a year for professional teeth cleanings. Discuss with your dentist how often you need to schedule regular teeth cleanings and exams.
5. Avoid Bad Habits
Practicing good oral hygiene to improve gum health can be a struggle with certain bad habits. These habits increase the risk of gingivitis and tooth decay.
Tobacco use is associated with gingivitis, periodontitis, and oral cancer. Smoking and chewing tobacco lower your immune system that fights infections like gum disease.
High consumption of sugary drinks and foods also lead to problems like gum disease and cavities. These sugars help feed the harmful bacteria. When oral hygiene isn’t at its best, the bacteria and plaque build-up quickly, which results in infections.
Improve Gum Health at Columbia Smiles
Columbia Smiles provides family dentistry in Columbia, MD. We serve Howard County and the surrounding area. Our services include more than gum disease prevention, they also include:
- Dental fillings
- Dental crowns and bridges
- Dental veneers
- Teeth whitening