Did you know that over 80% of Americans have some form of gum disease? A very sad survey recently published in Dentistry Today noted that 58% of dental patients did not feel that their dentist taught them how to prevent gum disease. You have probably heard of gingivitis but you may not know just how severe gum disease can become. Gum disease is linked to many overall health problems such as a stroke, Alzheimer’s, heart disease, and diabetes. In addition, as gum disease goes untreated it progresses into a serious illness called periodontitis that is capable of eroding facial bones, teeth, and soft oral tissues. In fact, gum disease is the number one reason adults lose their teeth.
Preventing Gum Disease
The best prevention method is to visit Dr. James Fondriest regularly for examinations. At your dental cleaning, we will measure the space between your tooth and gum line. As tartar builds up, it causes your gums to recede from your teeth. Tartar buildup eventually inflames and infects the gum tissue. We keep an eye on this to determine whether you have gum disease. In addition, routine cleanings help remove tartar deposits and plaque buildup. When our dental hygienists remove tartar and plaque, it greatly reduces the threat of developing gum disease.
Routine oral hygiene to prevent gum disease is imperative too. You should be sure to brush your teeth at least twice a day for two minutes at a time. You should also floss your teeth thoroughly every day. When you brush and floss, you stimulate your gums, disrupt bacterial colonies, and remove most of the day’s plaque buildup.
In some cases, gum disease is triggered by hormone changes, pregnancy, and certain medications. To learn more about preventing gum disease or treating it if you believe you might have it, we invite you to get a second opinion. We serve patients from all of the neighboring Chicago communities. If it has been awhile since your last checkup, contact Dr James Fondriest today at (847) 234-0517 to schedule an appointment.