Have you noticed your gums bleeding when you floss? Do you think this is because of the flossing, and that the best way to stop the bleeding is to quit flossing altogether? Do parts of your gums look discolored? Does your breath stink even after brushing? If you’ve noticed dark red, bleeding or inflamed gums, or are suffering from chronic bad breath, these are all warning signs of gingivitis, the first stage of gum disease. This is a serious condition affecting approximately half of all American adults. Gum disease is also the leading cause of adult tooth loss in America. The good news is there are ways a restorative dentist can help treat gingivitis, helping to reverse the symptoms in most cases. So if you’ve noticed dental symptoms such as these, it’s time to schedule an appointment.
How Does Gingivitis Start?
Gum disease generally starts with plaque buildup, which can then irritate the sensitive gum tissue, causing a number of problems. One of the best ways to prevent gum problems is to fight plaque through proper dental hygiene at-home, and regular professional cleanings. Since calcified plaque can only be removed through a professional cleaning, it is important not to neglect regular checkups, especially if you are already able to see plaque along your gumline, or if your gums are showing symptoms of gingivitis.
What to Do If You Have Gingivitis?
If you already have gingivitis, restorative treatment will be needed to reverse the symptoms and restore your smile. In some cases a deep cleaning is enough to repair the gums, but often periodontal treatment is necessary. This generally involves ultrasonic scaling, which involves loosening the plaque and thoroughly removing it.
Moving forward, eating a balanced diet, avoiding too much sugar, drinking plenty of water, and brushing and flossing daily can help prevent further plaque buildup and subsequent gum problems. But don’t neglect visits to the dentists, either, if you want to maintain great oral health.