If you only think about your teeth when you think about your oral health, then you may be putting your teeth at risk. Gum disease — not tooth decay — is the leading cause of tooth loss in the United States.
To keep your mouth as healthy as it can be, you need to pay attention to your gum health, too.
The team at our dentist office helps patients in and around Bloomington, MN, keep their mouths healthy through preventive care and our non-surgical gum disease treatments.
We encourage you to contact us online if you have questions about gum health or to call us at 952-679-1365 to schedule an appointment. Our team at Weddell Dental wants to keep you smiling, and that includes keeping your gums as healthy as they can be.
What You Can Do To Prevent Gum Disease
You probably brush your teeth on a daily basis. We hope you are following the American Dental Association recommendations to brush twice a day for two minutes each time while being sure to scrub your teeth on all sides.
This is a good start since brushing will remove many bacteria that cause periodontal disease.
We say it’s a good start because the ADA also recommends flossing daily as well. Cleaning between your teeth is necessary since your toothbrush isn’t as effective for cleaning those spaces between your teeth and gums.
Yet, a recent survey found that only 4 in 10 Americans reported that they floss daily. Based on the survey, most Americans don’t floss as often as they should, including 20 percent who reported that they never floss.
A separate survey found that people in different parts of the country said they prefer an hour in gridlocked traffic or cleaning a toilet to flossing their teeth. If you are one of them, you may want to consider using a different interdental cleaner instead.
Flossers are one option. You may have seen them in the toothpaste aisle. These typically have a short handle with a strand of floss on one end. Many people find them more comfortable to use than dental floss.
Water flossers can be equally effective. These devices use a stream of water to clean the spaces that your toothbrush can’t reach.
What We Can Do To Fight Gum Disease
If you do notice the symptoms of gum disease, then we urge you to contact Weddell Dental as soon as you can. The sooner we are able to see you, the more effective your treatment can be.
Whenever possible, we prefer to use non-surgical treatments for gum disease. One way we do this is with scaling and root planing.
If you’ve had a professional dental cleaning, then you will understand scaling and root planing. This is similar to what happens during a routine visit, only we clean deeper to remove plaque and tartar build-up around the roots of your teeth.
In some cases, we may recommend follow-up treatment that you can do at home to reduce your risk of a recurring periodontal infection. In more serious cases, we may discuss more advanced treatments.
Learn To Recognize Gum Disease
For better or worse, gum disease can develop undetected for a long time. Gum disease often is not painful until it reaches an advanced stage.
Please take a moment to review the symptoms of gum disease for your own sake. Keep in mind that healthy gums should feel firm to the touch and appear pink in color.
This is the early form of gum disease, and it’s symptoms are relatively mild.
Your gums may appear redder than usual. Your gums may appear to be somewhat swollen. And your gums may bleed when you brush or floss. Often this is a clue that you have not been flossing as often as you should.
You may be able to reverse your condition by being more deliberate about following the ADA recommendation for daily oral care.
Periodontitis is the advanced form of gum disease. Its symptoms are more noticeable.
Contact our dentist office in Bloomington, MN, to schedule a treatment if you notice these symptoms:
⊳ Gums that bleed easily
⊳ Gums that feel tender
⊳ Lingering bad breath or bad taste in your mouth
⊳ Gums that are separating from your teeth
⊳ Teeth that feel loose
We Are Here To Help
Everyone at Weddell Dental wants you to keep smiling. That’s why we want to help you care for your teeth and your gums. Call 952-679-1365 today or contact us online to request your next dental check-up.