Oral health is much more than just how straight or white your teeth are. While a bright smile is one of the most important elements of feeling confident and making a good first impression, good oral health can prevent the progression of serious problems like diabetes and heart disease. The dentists at North Pointe Dental Associates know what it takes to preserve good oral hygiene, including taking care of your gums.
Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is usually painless until it reaches an advanced stage. North Pointe Dental Associates is home to some of the best dentists in Tampa who focus on ensuring the highest quality dental care. They have shared the most effective tips to prevent gum disease and to avoid gum disease symptoms.
What is periodontal gum disease?
Gum disease starts when plaque builds up under and along the gum line. If left untreated, this can cause infections leading to tooth decay and gum disease. Gum disease symptoms include puffy or tender gum tissue, gums prone to bleeding, and even bad breath. While all this may sound scary, the good news is that gum disease is preventable and, in some cases, reversible.
Prevention starts at home
Considering the fact that gum disease is caused by plaque, the dentists at NPDA advise their patients to stick to a regular oral health routine. This includes brushing your teeth at least twice a day for two to three minutes with fluoridated toothpaste.
Flossing is the second most important part of the routine. Remember, flossing can help you reach areas a toothbrush simply cannot. If you don’t like flossing, consider using a floss holder or a Waterpik.
While it doesn’t replace brushing or flossing, gargling regularly with a therapeutic mouthwash can help reduce plaque and slow down the buildup of tartar. It can also remove food particles and debris from your mouth after you’ve brushed and flossed your teeth, leaving you with a clean, fresh mouth.
Another tip to prevent gum disease is to avoid cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, as they are frequently linked with gum disease and oral cancer. Smoking affects the immune system and makes it more difficult for gums to heal once they have been damaged.
It’s also wise to avoid starchy and sugary foods, as they can add to the risk factors affecting increased plaque, which can lead to gum disease. Make sure to schedule regular checkups with your dentist. This is by far the best way to detect gum disease as early as possible, which can significantly improve your recovery.
Regularly visit your dentist
Patients of all ages typically visit dentists at NPDA at least twice a year for their regular cleanings. Remember, if you brush your teeth and floss at least twice a day, you can remove most of the plaque. However, only a professional dentist can remove tartar, also known as calculus.
Regular cleaning, in addition to removing plaque and tartar, allows dentists to track their patients’ oral health on a regular basis and spot symptoms early on.
Schedule your appointment today
Gum disease can easily be prevented and reversed when detected early on. If you experience tender or bloody gums, receding gums, persistent bad breath, or loose teeth, call North Pointe Dental Associates at (813) 961-1727 and schedule an appointment with the best Tampa dentists.