Gum disease is more common than you may think. According to the CDC, more than half of adult Americans suffer from some level of gum disease!
Considering gum disease is a preventable condition, it is disturbing that so many adults are plagued with it. However, most adults probably don’t realize how a simple case of gingivitis could escalate into something serious. If left untreated, gum disease can cause bone and tissue loss. So, let’s review the two kinds of gum disease and what you can do if you have them.
Gingivitis is the most basic form of gum disease. If you don’t visit your dentist every six months, the plaque that builds can inflame your gums and cause them to become red and swollen. They may even be prone to bleeding when you brush your teeth.
Gingivitis is treatable and can easily be reversed with a faithful regimen of brushing, flossing, and visiting your dentist regularly.
Periodontitis is the more severe form of gum disease. If you don’t treat your gingivitis, you risk developing this damaging condition. If left untreated, the immune system fighting the bacteria in the affected gums could break down the bone tissue holding your teeth in place. Can you imagine loosing teeth because you didn’t visit your dentist? It happens. And, periodontal disease may affect your overall health including conditions such as heart disease, stroke, pneumonia, and diabetes.
What can you do to avoid all this trouble? Simply: brush, floss, visit your dentist and please, don’t smoke!
Smoking is one of the most significant risk factors associated with gum disease. If you need a reason besides lung cancer or oral cancer to quit smoking, consider the added pain and damage of gum disease.