May 7, 2019
Do your gums ever bleed when you brush or floss? You may have the beginning stage of gum disease. Gum disease is an infection or inflammation of your gums that can lead to serious oral health issues. Without receiving treatment, it can eventually lead to tooth and bone loss. Unfortunately, its effects don’t stop with your oral health, but gum disease can actually affect the health of your heart. Keep reading to learn more about gum disease, how it affects you, and what you can do to prevent it.
What Causes Gum Disease?
Typically, gum disease is caused by plaque and tartar buildup on the gumline as a result of poor oral hygiene. If you don’t brush and floss regularly, you’re at an incredibly high risk of gum disease. When plaque hardens into tartar, it can only be removed by a professional. This tartar separates your gums from your teeth, causing a range of uncomfortable symptoms that will only get worse if left untreated.
What are the Symptoms of Gum Disease?
Because gum disease can be reversed in its earlier stages, it’s vital to be on the lookout for these common warning signs:
- Gums that bleed easily
- Red or puffy gums
- Swollen or tender gums
- Persistent bad breath
- Teeth that appear longer
- Change in bite
- Gums that are separated from teeth
- Sores in your mouth
How Does it Affect My Heart?
While gum disease can cause serious issues like tooth loss, it can actually influence the health of your heart. Studies have shown that having gum disease increases your risk of heart disease, heart attack, and other heart issues by 20%. Additionally, research shows that those with gum disease face higher medical costs for heart-related treatments on average. This is because gum disease causes inflammation throughout your body, and even leads to the narrowing of important arteries. This is also why gum disease can increase your risk of diabetes, stroke, and even Alzheimer’s.
How Can I Prevent Gum Disease?
Thankfully, all of these problems can be avoided by following these tips:
- Brush and floss your teeth daily.
- Use a mouthwash approved by the American Dental Association.
- Attend regular dental visits.
- Avoid routine smoking or tobacco use.
- Avoid heavy consumption of alcohol.
Now that you know more about gum disease and the different ways that it can affect you, use these prevention tips to keep your mouth and body healthy.
Meet the Dentist
Dr. Alex Martin is a dentist who is experienced at preventing and detecting gum disease. He offers gum disease treatment at his practice to treat this problem while also increasing your chances of healthy gums in the future. He currently runs his own practice, and he can be contacted through his website or by phone at (480) 860-1993 for any questions that you may have.
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