February 1, 2018
It’s quite common for a discussion of oral hygiene and health to place the teeth as the center of importance. But although the ivories are very significant, what gets lost is the fact that they are completely dependent on the health of the gums. And if we were to humanize the two, the teeth would be the offspring and the gums the mother. And just like the latter nurtures the young child, the same relationship exists between your gums and your teeth. So as you continue reading, your dentist in Allentown will provide ways to care for your gums at home so that you can maintain optimal oral health.
Why It’s Important to Keep Your Gums Healthy
It’s very important to protect your gums because they are vulnerable to attacks from bacteria and plaque. The latter are already present in your mouth, but every time you eat they seek to feed on any leftover food particles and begin to multiply. If allowed to remain on your teeth and along your gum line long enough, these bacteria will then form the sticky substance called plaque that burrows into your gums and causes the following:
- Gingivitis – The stage that leads up to gum disease, its symptoms are bleeding, puffy and red gums. Any damage done doing this phase can be reversed.
- Gum Disease – At this point, there has been irreversible damage to the connecting fibers and bone that hold your teeth in place.
- Advanced Gum Disease – Extreme negligence leads to advanced gum disease where the fibers and bone that hold your teeth in place have been dissolved, leaving your ivories vulnerable to falling out.
Thankfully, though, there are ways to prevent the above scenarios through certain lifestyle practices.
How to Protect Your Teeth at Home
Here are some of the activities you should incorporate into your daily habits to protect your gums:
- Using Fluoride Toothpaste – A fluoride toothpaste option will help to fortify your enamel and fight off decay.
- Brushing and Flossing – One of the best ways to protect your gums is by brushing and flossing at least twice a day to remove harmful bacteria from your teeth and at the gum line.
- Avoiding Tobacco – Whether you chew or smoke tobacco, the effects are detrimental to your oral and overall health, infusing your gums with toxic chemicals that block the circulation of oxygen.
- Therapeutic Mouthwash – You can also purchase a therapeutic mouthwash with the American Dental Association seal of approval, certifying that it has active ingredients that fight tartar and plaque development.
By implementing these changes, you can be sure to see improvement in the health of your gums so that at you next semi-annual visit with your dentist, you can feel proud in knowing that you’ve taken an active role in your total wellness.
About the Author
Earning his Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from the University of Pennsylvania Dental School, Dr. Bradford G. Young went on to complete his General Practice Residency in the Lehigh Valley Health Network. A member of several professional organizations, Dr. Young practices at Bradford Young Family & Cosmetic Dentistry and can be reached for more information through his website.
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