What To Know About Gum Disease
At Friendly Family Dentistry, we continuously stress to our patients the importance of maintaining a proper oral hygiene routine. Most patients assume that preventing tooth decay is the reason we are so passionate about cleaning teeth properly. While this is absolutely true, maintaining good oral hygiene also helps to prevent other oral health issues that can cause a great deal of damage to your mouth. Gum disease is one of these issues. Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is a bacterial infection of the gum tissue.
Causes of Gum Disease
One of the leading causes of gum disease is plaque. Plaque is caused by lingering bacteria that remain on the teeth after brushing and flossing. Patients who properly brush and floss regularly have a lower chance of developing gum disease. While poor oral hygiene is a leading cause of gum disease, it is not the only cause. Other factors include:
- Hormonal changes such as during pregnancy and menopause
- Illnesses and medications
- Smoking and using tobacco in general
- Family history of gum disease
One of the best ways to avoid gum disease is to maintain routine hygiene examinations. For patients with no prior gum disease diagnosis, we recommend visiting our office every six months. During these appointments we not only inspect for gum disease, but also remove lingering plaque on the teeth and along the gumline that can lead to problems in the future.
Treatment for Gum Disease
Unfortunately, gum disease affects approximately half of American adults. Since it is such a common condition, we offer a number of treatments to help restore your oral health. When we recommend treatments for gum disease, we suggest scheduling an appointment as soon as possible. Delaying treatment only leads to further complications and the need for more extensive treatments. We may suggest a treatment such as:
- Root planing
- Antibiotic treatments
- Flap surgery
If you are located in the Terre Haute, IN area and it has been longer than six months since your last hygiene examination, we recommend calling our office to schedule an appointment. If you are concerned you may have gum disease or need to schedule a recommended treatment, our team would be more than happy to help. We look forward to seeing you soon!