What is gum disease?
Gum disease is when the soft tissue surrounding your teeth becomes infected, usually because of a build-up of plaque and tartar around your gum line. This common disease affects up to 3 in 10 Australian adults. There are generally two stages of gum disease, gingivitis and periodontitis.
- Gingivitis: This is the first and milder stage of gum disease that brings about red, swollen, and tender gum tissue that may be prone to bleeding when brushing. Bad breath may be another indicator of gingivitis. This stage of gum disease is relatively easy to treat.
- Periodontitis: If gingivitis is left untreated, it can lead to a more aggressive form of gum disease, known as periodontitis. This stage of gum disease can damage your teeth and gums at a rapid rate, leading to gum pockets, receding gums, jaw bone deterioration tooth loss. Periodontitis can be treatable with a periodontal treatment plan and exceptional at-home dental care.
It’s very possible to have gum disease with zero evident signs and symptoms. This is why routine dental check-ups are so essential.
At Pennant Hills Dental Centre, periodontal therapy is part of our extensive suite of services to help our patients achieve optimal oral health. We typically recommend periodontal therapy for moderate to advanced periodontitis. Periodontal therapy generally involves a treatment known as scaling and root planing. During this treatment, we carefully remove plaque and tartar from the root surfaces and remove any toxic bacteria build-up from your tooth roots.
In most cases, this is the only treatment you will require, so you can be pain-free and smiling with confidence again in no time. Periodontal therapy sometimes requires checkups every few months to monitor your gum health and minimise the chance of recurrence.
Treating gum disease in Pennant Hills
How to prevent gum disease
Luckily, there are several ways you can prevent gum disease, and mostly, they’re the same ways you’d prevent other oral health issues:
When you know the root cause of a problem, it can be a lot easier to solve. Our lifestyles and habits are major contributing factors to our oral health. It’s important to recognise the elements of your lifestyle or certain things that you do that negatively affect your gum health so you can take appropriate action. Some questions you may ask yourself are, do I brush my teeth for long enough? Do I floss regularly enough? Does periodontitis run in the family? Knowing the answers to questions like these can help you avoid decay by following the best gum care plan for your needs.
A primary cause of gum disease is the build-up of plaque and tartar in between your teeth and your gum line. The combination of effective tooth brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste and daily flossing can help defend your gums against infection. You can add an antibacterial mouthwash into your daily at-home dental care regime too for extra measure!
A primary way to dodge gum disease and any of its adverse effects on your oral health is by having biannual dental checkups and professional teeth cleaning. Professional dental care is key to maintaining optimal dental health, providing elements of dental care you can simply not achieve at home on your own. At Pennant Hills Dental Centre, our dentists have unparalleled knowledge and experience, advanced tools and technology and can deliver the latest in dental techniques to help you maintain a beautiful smile and happy, healthy gums.
Consuming healthy, balanced meals that provide you with adequate nutrition can be key to maintaining your gum health. Try to only eat starchy and sugary foods in careful moderation, as eating these foods can encourage decay and disease in your mouth. As well as being good for your teeth and gums, a wholesome, balanced diet can boost your overall health and immune system.
When your mouth is dry, bacteria that cause decay and disease flourish. You may have a dry mouth as a result of medication, a blocked nasal passage or simply from not staying hydrated enough. A great way to ensure your mouth has enough saliva to help rid the surface of your teeth and gums of bacteria is to ensure you drink enough water throughout the day. Not only does staying hydrated positively impact the health of your mouth, but it can also have great general health benefits.