Did you know that gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is entirely preventable and easily treatable (when caught early enough)? True story. But there is also some bad news associated with gum disease. For starters, it impacts something like half of all Americans at some point in life. Many of those dental patients either don’t know or know and opt to not do anything about it until it is too late. By too late we mean after tooth loss and other larger health concerns have unfolded as a result of this oral infection. So, if you want to keep smiling for many years to come, read on, and then call us at 720-644-8186 to request your consultation appointment at our Highlands Ranch, CO dental office.
What You Need To Know About Gum Disease
The threat of gum disease is a problem that many people ignore when they are younger because they think it only has to do with older adults. Fair enough. Seniors (those 65+) are, in fact, more susceptible to gum disease. However, ANYONE can struggle with gum disease AT ANY AGE. Here are a few facts about gum disease that you should take to heart.
- It’s the #1 cause of tooth loss in adults. Yep, gum disease, not dental trauma or even tooth decay, that leads to the most teeth being lost.
- The disease can destroy more than just the gums. This infection initially attacks the gums, but if left undiagnosed or untreated, it will begin attacking and eroding the bone as well. This is actually what causes the teeth to become loosened up to the point that they fall out.
- Nearly 50 percent of Americans will get gum disease. Think about it: half of all adults in America will suffer from gum disease, at some point.
- You can have gum disease without even knowing it. The first sign of gum disease is often bleeding or swollen gums, but these are not the only warning signals.
- It’s not always something that can be “cured.” As we stated at the beginning, the early stages of gum disease is easily treated and even curable. But advanced gum disease, periodontitis, is not so curable. Those with periodontitis will have to visit the dentist at least once every three to four months to monitor their gums and receive the necessary treatment for the rest of their lives.
- Gum disease is correlated to more serious problems like heart disease and diabetes. A correlation means that there is a link. So, while there is not necessarily a cause-and-effect relationship, we so know that those with gum disease face a higher risk of heart disease and diabetes.
Preventing And Treating Gum Disease
A lot of the prevention depends on what you do at home in front of the bathroom mirror. Everyone ought to brush twice a day and floss daily.
Flossing is non-negotiable by the way. Choosing to not floss is going to come back to haunt you, as you’re not cleaning the area of the tooth beneath the gum-line. About ⅓ of the tooth (the root) is housed under the gum line. Just like the crown of the tooth, the root of the tooth can be attacked with bacteria and harmful acids. Most of our patients with gum disease have issues of tartar buildup down below the gum-line.
In our office, we can set you up with a professional teeth cleaning and oral exam. These should happen twice a year (at least) because that will keep your mouth clean and your teeth looking their best. It will also allow us to get ahead of treating gum disease if any has shown up since your last appointment.
We can treat gum disease with advanced root planing and scaling. This is a simple process of removing the harmful bacteria and tartar from beneath the gum-line. We then use antibiotics on the gums as a deterrent the infection from coming back.
Call Today To Keep Your Smile Tomorrow
Our office and dentists have been treating gum disease for years. So, your smile is in good hands with us. Call Highlands Ranch Smiles in Highlands Ranch, CO today at 720-644-8186 or fill out our online form to schedule an appointment.