March 11, 2020
While your teeth typically get the spotlight when discussing your smile, did you know that your gums are just as important? February is National Gum Disease Awareness Month, which is an effort to raise awareness on the importance of healthy gums. Also known as periodontal disease, gum disease affects about half of the American population, and it can lead to incredibly serious risks if left untreated. Keep reading to learn more about this problem, when gum disease treatment in Skokie is necessary, and how you can prevent it.
What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease is an infection and inflammation of the gums that will typically develop due to poor oral hygiene. When plaque and bacteria build up on the gums, it can cause infection that can lead to permanent tissue damage, jawbone deterioration, and even tooth loss if left untreated. Additionally, studies have linked gum disease with increased risks of heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, certain cancers, and even more serious overall health issues.
What Are the Symptoms of Gum Disease?
Thankfully, if it’s caught early on, gum disease can be completely reversed. That’s why you should be on the lookout for these common warning signs:
- Puffy or swollen gums
- Tender or sensitive gums
- Gums that bleed when brushing or flossing
- Bad breath
- Teeth that appear longer
- Little pockets beneath teeth
If any of these symptoms sound familiar, contact your dentist in Skokie right away.
How is Gum Disease Treated?
Thankfully, your dentist can stop gum disease, and even reverse its effects, depending on when it’s caught. The most common treatment is called scaling and root planing, which involves a deep cleaning of your smile. After plaque and tartar are removed, your dentist will reach beneath the gums to smooth out your tooth roots, making it harder for bacteria and debris to collect in the future. This not only gives you a healthy mouth today, but it decreases your chance of gum disease returning down the road.
How Can I Prevent It?
While gum disease is an incredibly common problem, it is preventable! All it takes is knowing the right steps for a healthy smile. The most important prevention tip is consistent brushing and flossing. Make sure that you brush twice a day and floss once to remove plaque and bacteria from your smile. You can add a nonalcoholic mouthwash to your routine for an extra layer of cleaning, and you should always maintain regular dental visits. By practicing regular oral healthcare, you can lower your risk of gum disease and smile with confidence!
Now that you know some important information about gum disease for this month of awareness, remember the common symptoms and these prevention tips to stay healthy.
About the Practice
At North Shore Family Dentistry, Dr. David B. Schwartz and Dr. Arielle Wulfsohn combine their knowledge and expertise to prevent and detect gum disease for their patients. They offer various gum disease treatment options if they do notice symptoms. For any questions, they can be reached through their website or by phone at (847) 677-2894.
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