Taking care of your gums is a very important part of your routine dental care. However, the gums seem to always take a backseat to other aspects of the mouth, like the teeth. While the teeth are generally the most visible part of your mouth, the gums are literally and figuratively the foundation of the teeth. In order to have a healthy mouth, you must start at the gums.
How Do I Know If My Gums Aren't Healthy?
At times, someone can be afflicted with some sort of gum disease, whether in its early or later stages, and not be aware of the problems. While this can be the case, it is more likely that you will experience some of these symptoms if you have some form of gum disease present within your mouth:
These symptoms, as you can tell, progress overtime if not take care of quickly. It is in your best interest to visit your dentist at the first sign of gum disease in order to stop major problems before they start.
There are three main types of gum disease, each one progressively more pronounced than the one previous.
Generally, gingivitis occurs after your teeth have been exposed to food and bacteria without having those contaminates brushed away on a regular basis. This buildup can move from the surface of the teeth to beneath the gum line. Once this happens, the gums turn red and swollen, one of the signs that your gums are plagued with gingivitis.
Periodontitis is the next step up from gingivitis. This happens when the plaque and bacteria on and around your gums cause your gums to begin to pull away from your teeth. At this point, the plaque that has gotten into your gums is impossible to reach with a toothbrush. If this problem is not taken care of, both your gum tissue and your bones can begin to deteriorate, eventually leading to loss of teeth and extreme pain.
Also referred to as ANUG or “trench mouth”, Acute Necrotising Ulcerative Gingivitis is a very severe type of gum disease. In order to rid your mouth of this type of gum disease, you must have a very regimented oral hygiene routine and take antibiotics.
Preventing gum disease is actually easier than you may think, and it is also much better for you than trying to counteract gum diseases after they have taken hold. Visiting your dentist regularly, brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing between your teeth at least every other day, using antiseptic mouthwash, and quitting smoking are some of the most common and effective ways to keep your mouth healthy and your smile pearly white.