When we think of problems at the dentist, we tend to focus on having fillings, or losing teeth, because of tooth decay. Of course, tooth decay is problem, especially in kids, but in adults the main culprit behind tooth loss is in fact gum disease.
At Crofts Dental Practice, one of our main focuses is on making sure that our patients have healthy gums in Essex. We know that with this particular problem, prevention is so much easier than cure. Gum disease may start off in the gum but it spreads, and when it spreads, that’s when the real problems start.
Are your gums healthy?
If you have healthy gums, they will be pink and firm, holding your teeth securely in place. Healthy gums do not hurt or bleed when they are brushed. If that’s happening, then you are at risk of early gum disease.
Early gum disease
Gum disease comes in two stages. We call the early stage gingivitis. It’s hard for patients to spot because gingivitis doesn’t necessarily hurt. Perhaps it will make your gums bleed when you brush them, perhaps it won’t. Perhaps your gums will be red and swollen. If you want to be sure of tackling it early (and believe us, you do), then you need to come for regular dental check-ups and allow us to spot it. What you really want to avoid, if you can, is letting gingivitis get to the next stage.
Advanced gum disease
Technically known as periodontitis, this is when the gum disease spreads into the tissues and bones that support the teeth. You are likely to develop bad breath, loose teeth, have an unpleasant taste in your mouth and even collections of pus under your gums or teeth (abscesses). Periodontitis can lead to teeth falling out.
Gum disease and prevention
You can easily avoid gum disease by maintaining a diligent oral health routine. Brush the teeth carefully for at least two minutes last thing at night and at one other time during the day. Floss and use interdental brushes, which come in various sizes, especially if you have bigger gaps between your teeth.