According to the CDC, half of Americans over the age of 30 have gum disease. Periodontal disease is a gum infection that can damage soft tissue and destroy the bone that supports teeth. Periodontal disease often results from poor oral hygiene, making many cases preventable. Learning to spot the common signs of this disease can…
Your Gum Health: How Plaque is Involved With Gum Disease
Gum disease is the last thing someone wants in their mouth. Not only can it lead to a wide range of dental issues, but it can also lead to some problems that relate to a person’s overall health. Plaque is one of the key players in the development of gum disease. It is necessary to recognize how easy it is to prevent this buildup.
Important information about gum disease
What is gum disease?
Gum disease is the plain English name for periodontitis, which is a severe gum infection that will damage the gums and can lead to worse problems later. Gum disease may have the ability to destroy the jawbone. An infection that starts in the gums can extend through the root of the tooth and into the bone. If this is allowed to progress, it could change the overall shape of the face.
At the same time, gum disease has also been known to set the stage for health issues such as heart and lung disease. Untreated infections can spread quickly, especially in areas that are more difficult to clean. Gum disease can also lead to other dental issues like tooth loss due to receding gums.
How plaque plays a role
Plaque forms with the consumption of foods or beverages that are high in sugar and starches. The bacteria in the mouth feasts on these sugars and starches, which sets the stage for tooth decay. Highly acidic food and drink can also play a part. Since plaque is sticky, it can hold the acids that make contact with the teeth in place which will break down enamel and speed up the tooth decay process.
The buildup of plaque can lead to gum disease. It begins with gingivitis. Some signs of gingivitis include tender, swollen gums. Infected gums will often bleed after brushing as well. However, proper dental hygiene can help to alleviate these issues.
If left untreated, infected gums can progress into a severe form of periodontal disease. As gum tissues recede, this will allow bacteria to access the underlying bone support of the teeth and destroy it. This is just the beginning of a chain of events that leads to the destabilization of a patient's teeth, which then results in the need for more dental procedures.
The best way to prevent disease and preserve overall gum health is simple good oral hygiene. People should brush their teeth three times a day and floss twice a day. That should not be the only prevention, however. It is important to schedule a regular dental appointment every six months. A dentist can catch early signs of gum disease during a routine examination. These are two of the best preventative measures to take to ensure that gum disease does not happen at any point in the future.
Prevent plaque and gum disease
Plaque can lead to gum disease. Gum disease can lead to a lot of issues in both dental and overall health. Prevent gum disease from forming by regularly brushing and flossing your teeth every day. For information about preventing gum disease or to ask other questions about gum health, please contact our dental office today.
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