It usually starts small. Maybe your gums look a little redder than usual. Maybe your gums bleed when you do floss.
It doesn’t hurt (yet) so it’s no big deal, right?
Gradually, things start to change. Your gums feel tender, and they appear to be pulling away from your teeth. If you don’t do something about your gum disease at this point, it could lead to tooth loss and damage to your jawbone.
If you live in or near Highlands Ranch, CO, we hope you will contact our dentist office long before your teeth are at risk.
We offer nonsurgical gum disease treatment that could remove the infection from your mouth. Then we can work with you to prevent your gum disease from coming back.
Be Proactive In Fighting Gum Disease
Gum disease affects millions of people across the country every year, but many do not realize they have it. Too many people do not recognize that bleeding gums are a sign of gingivitis, the early stage of gum disease.
When you floss daily, you are being proactive in removing food particles, bacteria, and plaque from between your teeth and gums. If you aren’t flossing as often as you should, you are creating an opportunity for bacteria to infect your gums.
In other words, your bleeding gums are a clue that you may not be flossing as often as you should (daily) or that you are not flossing correctly. Our dental professionals at Highlands Ranch Smiles will be happy to demonstrate the right way to floss if you aren’t sure that you are doing it right.
It’s also important to note that flossing should be done along with your daily brushing. Both of these steps remove bacteria which can lead to gum disease (and tooth decay).
You Should Take Gum Disease Seriously
Gum disease isn’t just about your oral health. Research has shown repeatedly that gum infections can be an indicator of other health issues.
Let’s start with your heart. The bacteria that cause gum disease can get into your bloodstream if left untreated. This same bacteria has been found in the heart. These bacteria also can increase your risk of having a stroke.
Gum disease should be a particular concern for people with diabetes. Research suggests the two conditions may affect one another.
People with diabetes are more likely to experience dry mouth, which can create conditions for gum disease to thrive. And when left untreated, gum disease may make it more difficult to control your blood sugar level.
Women who are pregnant should also be aware that they are at a higher risk of gum disease. Hormonal changes that take place during pregnancy are good for a developing fetus. Unfortunately, those changes can help the bacteria that cause gum disease, too.
Women who have gum disease during their pregnancy are statistically more likely to give birth to premature or low birthweight babies.
Treating Gum Disease
At Highlands Ranch Smiles, we want you to seek treatment for any gum infection as soon as you are able. Early treatment is less invasive. It’s also more effective.
Our first step is often scaling and root planing. This is a deeper cleaning than you would receive during a routine visit. In this procedure, we clean below the gumline to remove plaque and bacteria from the roots of your teeth.
We may prescribe Arestin® as well. This is an antibacterial gel that can kill remaining bacteria and reduce your risk of the infection returning.
We can even take it one step further with laser dentistry. This allows us to remove infected gum tissue without cutting into your gums. This speeds up recovery compared to surgical treatment, and it preserves more of your healthy gum tissue.
As a follow-up, we may recommend Perio Protect. You place the solution in custom-fitted mouthguards. You’ll wear them for a few minutes per day during your treatment.
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