Did you know that a third of Americans admit they’d rather do some unpleasant activity — like wash the dishes, wait in a long check-out line, or sit in gridlock traffic — than floss their teeth?
But here’s another fact to consider: Half of all adults suffers from gum disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
There is some good news in all of this, however. Gum disease is preventable. In its early stages, it’s even curable! And even if you’re already exhibiting signs of advanced or severe gum disease, the caring team at Lakeside Dentistry can help you manage it.
Let’s work together to improve your gum health! Read to learn more about the ways Dr. Gores and his team can help. Then, call our Rochester, MN office at 507-316-6444 to schedule an appointment!
What Is Gum Disease?
Gum disease is an infection of the tissue surrounding your teeth. Many adults don’t realize they have it because it’s often painless until the damage is severe.
Diagnosing gum disease early and promptly treating it will help minimize damage and the need for more extensive dental treatment. Plus, unmanaged gum disease can increase your risk of heart attack, stroke, and diabetes.
There are two types of gum disease: gingivitis and periodontitis.
Gingivitis is a mild form of gum disease, usually marked by inflamed gums that may also be red, tender, or bleeding. At this stage, gum disease can be reversible. But without proper care, gingivitis can worsen into periodontitis, which often causes gum recession and sometimes even tooth loss.
Gum disease can be caused by a number of things, including poor oral hygiene, genetics, and tobacco use. Certain conditions, such as diabetes and pregnancy, can also increase your susceptibility to gum disease.
What Are The Signs Of Gum Disease?
Some early indications you may have gum disease include:
- Gums that are red, swollen, or tender
- Gums that bleed easily
- Bad breath
- Changes in bite or teeth alignment
- Loose teeth
- Gum recession
The team at Lakeside Dentistry has been trained to look for these warning signs when you come in for a routine cleaning. That’s part of the reason why regular dentists visits are so important!
It’s recommended that you come in once every six months for an exam and deep cleaning, even if you brush and floss religiously on your own. If it’s been awhile since your last checkup, call Lakeside Dentistry at 507-316-6444 to schedule an appointment!
How Is Gum Disease Treated?
In the early stages of gum disease, the infection can be eradicated with a deep cleaning procedure called scaling and root planing.
This procedure involves gently removing plaque and tartar from around and beneath your gumline. Then, we’ll carefully smooth the roots of your teeth to discourage future bacterial buildup.
At Lakeside Dentistry, we use an ultrasonic scaler to thoroughly clean along your gumline. It’s more effective and more gentle than the hand tools typically used for a scaling and root planing procedure, so you’ll experience less discomfort and spend less time in the dentist chair!
Then, to maintain your healthy gums after your deep cleaning, make sure you’re flossing your teeth once a day!
How Is Gum Recession Repaired?
If your gumline has receded, it could be putting the bony structures supporting your teeth at risk. In severe cases of gum recession, “pockets” or gaps form between your teeth and your gums as the gum tissue pulls away from your teeth.
These gaps are prone to bacterial buildup, and since brushing and flossing can’t effectively remove food particles from these hard-to-reach areas, it can cause tooth decay and bad breath. Plus, when your gums pull away from your teeth, it can leave you self-conscious about your smile.
It’s important to repair your gumline as soon as you notice that recession is occurring because left alone, the condition will simply worsen. If you’ve noticed an increased sensitivity to hot, cold, or sweet foods and drinks, or if you’ve noticed that your smile has taken on a strange, elongated appearance, give us a call.
We can assess your situation and provide a deep cleaning of the gumline. If necessary, we’ll recommend a procedure to repair the gumline. Gumline recession is most commonly treated with a gum graft, which involves placing healthy tissue along the receded gumline.
Better Oral Health Is Within Reach!
One of the easiest ways to improve your oral health — and your overall health — is to get gum disease under control.
At Lakeside Dentistry, we want to help make sure your teeth and gums are serving you well at every stage of your life! Give us a call today at 507-316-6444 to make an appointment. You can also use our convenient online form.