- Gums that easily bleed when you eat, brush, or floss.
- A receding gum line, and thus, “longer,” more exposed teeth.
- Inflamed or sore gums. In advanced stages, pus may appear in the gums where they contact your teeth.
But you don’t need to wait for such symptoms to develop and compromise your oral health. Gum disease is generally preventable. Here are three ways you can fight gum disease before it happens:
1. Maintain Good Oral Hygiene
Plaque and the bacteria that feeds on it is the ultimate cause of periodontal disease. By brushing and flossing twice a day, you dramatically reduce your risks of gum infection. Also consider using an antimicrobial mouthwash and toothpaste designed to improve gum health.
Be sure to remove all food particles between teeth, to brush the tongue since it is often a “haven” of mouth bacteria, and to use floss picks to remove plaque along the border of teeth and gums (where brushes and string floss fail to reach).
2. Consume Healthier Foods and Drinks
Although genetic factors and age play a role, gum diseases are often the result of poor dietary choices. Consuming soft drinks, candy, and other sugary foods in large quantities also puts you at high risk. But you can also improve gum, tooth, and mouth health by eating beneficial foods. Examples include:
- Apples, cucumbers, and carrot/celery sticks help keep your teeth and gums clean due to the water they contain and the frequent chewing they require.
- Oranges, other citrus fruits, and broccoli all improve gum health by infusing your body with additional Vitamin C.
- Yogurt’s calcium and probiotics help defend against cavities, gum inflammation, and bad breath.
- Water is the simplest but one of the best preventative cures. It loosens/dissolves particles in your mouth and washes them safely away.
3. Schedule Regular Dental Check-ups
The American Dental Association recommends a dental cleaning and check-up twice a year. Sometimes you may need a routine cleaning, other times a deep cleaning, but you should also consider getting an annual CPE (comprehensive periodontal evaluation), especially if you suspect you may be at high risk or already have some form of periodontal disease. Contact Dr. Kenzik’s Ormond Beach Periodontal office to schedule a consultation.