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How To Prevent Gum Disease Before It Starts

Periodontal disease can be hazardous to the health of your teeth, gums, and even bone tissue. Once advanced, the disease is pervasive and requires ongoing treatment. While gum disease can effectively be treated and reversed, this is only the case if gingivitis is recognized in the earliest stages of the disease and if prompt action is taken. 

Preventing Gingivitis at Home

Gingivitis is a condition in which the gum tissue becomes inflamed due to plaque buildup on the teeth. By preventing plaque from ever building up and disrupting plaque before it hardens, you can halt symptoms of gingivitis before it becomes a more severe issue.

The Symptoms of Gingivitis

Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease, and unfortunately, symptoms can be challenging to recognize at home with an untrained eye. When looking for signs and symptoms of gum disease, keep watch for any of the following: 

Bleeding Gums

If your gums are bleeding easily, especially after you've just brushed your teeth or used dental floss, this can be a sign of gum disease. While minimal bleeding of the gums is normal, especially if you have just begun a new flossing routine or are using a new toothbrush with firmer bristles, it's recommended to discuss any persistent, excessive bleeding with your dentist.

Purple Gums

Gums that are dark red or purple may be a clear indication there is something more serious going on beneath the surface. 

Swollen or Tender Gums

Experiencing pain specifically in your gum tissue and your gums are swollen and puffy. 

Receding Gums

Your teeth appear more prominent because your gum tissue is pulling away from the teeth, and pockets look like they're forming. 

Bad Breath

Because a bacterial infection causes gingivitis, that same bacteria can be causing you to experience bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth that lingers and doesn't seem to go away regardless of brushing or rinsing.

Bite Changes

If teeth start to feel loose, or you notice any changes to your bite when closing your mouth. 

The Best Oral Hygiene Practices for Healthy Gums

The first and mildest stage of gum disease is also the easiest to treat and can also be reversed. If you find yourself relating to the symptom list above, the first thing to do is set up an appointment with your dentist to evaluate your gums properly. Thorough professional cleanings and checkups followed by good home care are usually enough to reverse gingivitis. 

As soon as you see any signs of gingivitis, give these tips and tricks a try to do your part in reversing any damaging effects: 

  1. Since the primary cause of gum disease is excessive plaque buildup from poor oral hygiene, give your brushing and flossing routine some extra time and attention. 
  2. Research the proper techniques of brushing your teeth and watch demonstration videos online for a visual reference. 
  3. Use your cell phone as a resource and set two daily reminders to brush your teeth. Additionally, using the timer feature will help to make sure you're brushing for a full two minutes, twice a day. 
  4. Invest in new dental products to get yourself excited about brushing and flossing. Electric toothbrushes have built-in timer features to ensure you brush for the full two minutes, and a floss holder can make flossing more convenient. 
  5. An antiseptic mouthwash helps remove harmful bacteria. It's a great way to keep your mouth clean during the day when brushing may not be an option.
  6. Cutting down on sugars and starches that cause plaque buildup with help your cause right at the source of the problem. 
  7. Swap habits of consuming soda and other sugary drinks with water which helps rinse your mouth and keeps plaque at bay. 

What To Do If You Already Have Symptoms

If your gingivitis does progress to periodontal disease, it's not too late. Tompkins Dental provides expert periodontal treatments and prioritizes patient comfort. With the proper preventative measures in place, we will help you do everything to maintain excellent, functioning oral health.

If you're experiencing any of the symptoms we listed above, contact Tompkins Dental today. 

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