Gum diseases often go unnoticed until they reach severity. When it comes to tooth loss, gum disease is the leading cause.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 47% of the people over 30 suffer from gum diseases in the US.
What are some of the most common causes of gum diseases and which of them are preventable?
1. Plaque Buildup
Plaque is perhaps the most common cause of gum diseases. Every healthy mouth has a complex “community” of bacteria. In fact, oral bacteria can be beneficial as well, but problems start when the balance of bacteria shifts.
Oral bacteria can hold on to your teeth and gum to form plaque which is a soft and sticky film. Over time, it turns into a hardened deposit of calcium carbonate, known as tartar. While regular brushing and flossing remove the bacteria, tartar can’t be removed.
Due to plaque, gums develop inflammation which can lead to advanced periodontal diseases. How can it be prevented? Get in touch with a dentist to get root planing and scaling done followed by regular brushing and flossing.
2. Smoking or Tobacco Consumption
64% of smokers suffer from gum diseases. Smoking leaves your mouth vulnerable to gum diseases, infections, and even oral cancer. Tobacco consumption through smoking or chewing can interfere with gum tissue cells.
Smoking is, of course, a preventable cause and can not only reduce the risk of gum diseases but also improve your overall oral health.
3. Hormonal Changes
Hormonal changes can occur during pregnancy and usual menstrual cycles. Your gums are more susceptible to gum diseases during pregnancy so it’s important to take extra care. One common issue is inflammation of gums and bleeding.
Although these issues typically go away after the pregnancy, it’s important to consult your dentist, just to be on the safe side.
4. Nutritional Deficiencies
Not getting enough Vitamin C can also be harmful to your gums whereas a sugar-high diet, lack of hydration, and Vitamin C deficiency can cause gum diseases. How can it be prevented? Consult with your doctor to improve your diet and increase Vitamin C intake.
5. Prescription Medicines
Some medications can also cause side effects such as reduction in saliva which leads to a dry mouth. Dry mouth can cause bacteria to spread readily which poses a risk of gum diseases.
How can it be prevented? You can avoid medicines that have side effects such as dry mouth by consulting with your doctor.
Diabetes is a systemic disease which can lead to a weak immune system. It has also been linked to gum diseases.
Age is one of the biggest contributing factors when it comes to gum diseases. According to the CDC, 70% adults over the age of 65 years suffer from periodontal diseases.
Gum diseases can be controlled and treated with regular cleaning and by maintaining oral hygiene and we can help you with that! Based in Silver Spring, Dana Keith DDS and Associates offers a comprehensive range of dental services.
For dental treatment, schedule an appointment now or get in touch with us!