How to Prevent Gum Disease
July 18th, 2014
Many adults suffer from some form of gum disease, but are actually unaware that they do. While it does affect some people younger in life, it generally occurs as people age, and is most commonly found in adults aged 35 and up. If left untreated, it can lead to serious problems, including the need for surgical treatment.
The good news is, proper oral hygiene habits will prevent gum disease. Below are five ways that you can prevent gum disease:
Brush Regularly: Dentists recommend thoroughly brushing teeth at least twice a day. Choose a toothbrush with soft, nylon bristles to effectively remove plaque from gums without irritating the gums. Brush your teeth in a circular motion instead of brushing across your teeth, and spend at least two minutes brushing. Remember to brush the inner surfaces of your teeth, as well, and your tongue.
Floss: Brushing your teeth properly is only about half the battle. While many people skip it, flossing is a critical step to maintaining good oral hygiene, and removes about 40% of the plaque that brushing alone can’t. If you think of each tooth as having five surfaces, brushing can reach three of them, but flossing is the only way to effectively reach the other two. Break off a piece of floss about 15 to 18 inches long, slide it between your teeth, and polish with an up/down motion. For those that prefer something sturdier, try a wood pick like Stim-U-Dent.
Rinse: After you brush and floss, rinse your mouth with a non-alcoholic mouth rinse like our Healthy Gums Antigingivitis Rinse. Containing a purified amount of aloe vera, it reduces and prevents bleeding gums, which are one of the first signs of gingivitis.
Eat a Healthy Diet: A lot of bacteria in the mouth feeds off of sugar. And with the average American diet high in sugar, plaque basically has a playground in your mouth. Start by reading the nutrition labels on the food and drink you purchase to help control the amount of sugars you are consuming. Choose water over soda or other sugary drinks. Also, make sure your diet is nutrient-rich, as a diet lacking in certain nutrients can make it difficult for the tissues in your mouth to fight infections.
Visit the Dentist: Your dentist has professional tools to remove plaque, tartar, and other build-up on your teeth that the average person cannot remove. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends that you visit your dentist at least once a year to have a professional cleaning and check-up. If you have a history of gum disease, then it’s recommended you get your teeth cleaned more often.