Periodontal disease is a chronic bacterial infection that attacks the gums and bones supporting your teeth. This infection can cause your gums to pull away from your teeth and create pockets where plaque and tartar can accumulate. If not treated, this can lead to loose teeth or tooth loss. If you encounter any concerns about the health of your gums, please schedule an appointment with our dentist in The Woodlands, TX at Dental Specialists & Implant Center at The Woodlands, as soon as possible so we can treat them before they develop into something more serious.
When to See a Periodontist
Regular professional cleanings can help to prevent gum disease from developing, but there are times when doctors need to step in and help treat the condition. If you notice any of these symptoms with your mouth or gums, it may be time to see a periodontist:
Bleeding while brushing or flossing. On a milder note, red or swollen gums are also a sign of gum disease and should be monitored closely by a dentist.
Continual bad breath despite regular brushing and rinsing. It may be time to consider other treatment methods.
Receding gum lines around the teeth. This is a significant sign of periodontal disease and should be checked immediately by a dental care provider.
Pockets between teeth and gums become deeper over time. These pockets can house harmful bacteria, so they must be cleaned out as soon as possible to prevent more severe problems from occurring.
Deep infection pockets that lead to pus forming between the teeth and gums. This can be very painful, so it’s essential to seek immediate treatment from a dental professional.
The Mouth-Body Connection
Studies have found that the bacteria that causes periodontal disease can make its way into your bloodstream through your mouth’s saliva ducts and travel throughout your body. Once it finds its way into your bloodstream, it attaches to fatty plaques in your blood vessels and eventually inflames them. This can lead to heart disease and other health-related problems. Luckily, your periodontist can help prevent and control periodontal disease. Through routine checkups and professional cleanings, we can help eliminate harmful bacteria from your mouth before they can enter the bloodstream and potentially cause other health issues.
Preventing Gum Disease
Proper oral hygiene can prevent the onset of gum disease. Brushing your teeth twice daily with good toothpaste can help reduce plaque buildup. Flossing once daily removes food particles from between teeth that a toothbrush cannot reach. Using an antibacterial mouthwash can help kill the bacteria that cause bad breath and gum disease. Not smoking or chewing tobacco can also help reduce the risk of developing gum disease. It is essential to visit your dentist at least twice a year for a professional cleaning to remove plaque buildup and prevent the development of periodontal disease.
Because periodontal disease has been linked to severe health problems like diabetes, cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease, Alzheimer’s, and more, it’s essential to keep your gums healthy.
Brush your teeth for two minutes at least twice daily with fluoride toothpaste. Ask your dentist or hygienist about mouthwashes that can help strengthen enamel. Avoid smoking or using tobacco-based products, which can increase your risk for gum disease and make treatment more difficult. Limit the intake of sugary foods and drinks and rinse with water after every meal to remove food particles that bacteria can feed on to cause decay. These tips, coupled with regular professional dental care, can help protect your oral health and prevent the onset of periodontal disease.
Women and Periodontal Health
Studies have shown that women may be at a greater risk than men of developing periodontal disease. For one, hormonal changes during pregnancy may affect a woman’s gums and make them more sensitive and less resistant to bacteria, which could result in gum disease. During menopause, changes in hormone levels could also lower the body’s ability to fight infections like gum disease. Other health conditions that women are more prone to include diabetes, heart disease, and osteoporosis, all of which could affect the health of your gums.
Arestin is an antibiotic treatment for moderate to severe gum disease that has been proven to stop the progression of gum infections. An antibiotic powder is inserted into the infected periodontal pockets via a minimally invasive procedure. Once the pocket is sealed, the antibiotic is released over time to kill the harmful bacteria causing the infection. Eventually, the condition will completely heal, and the gums will be healthy again. This treatment for periodontitis is a great way to ensure that patients will not develop the advanced periodontal disease in the future.
Visit Dental Specialists & Implant Center at The Woodlands at 3117 College Park Dr #230, The Woodlands, TX, or call (936) 231-8937 for the best dental care according to your specific needs.
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The Woodlands, TX
3117 College Park Dr #230, The Woodlands, TX 77384