Red, swollen, inflamed gums prone to bleeding when you brush or floss indicate the early stage of gum disease (gingivitis). It results from the build-up of a sticky film substance (plaque) under and along the gum line. Plaque is filled with bacteria which can cause an infection that damages the gum and bone. Fortunately, the earliest form of Monterey gum disease does not affect the bone and surrounding tissue. While gum disease is common, it is also highly preventable. Following a good oral hygiene program is the best way to prevent periodontitis or gum disease. It is also vital to begin these tips early and practice them consistently.
Brush your teeth twice every day.
One of the simplest yet effective ways to prevent gum disease is by brushing your teeth twice a day. Brushing removes food particles and plaque between your gums and teeth and reduces acid levels in your mouth, protecting your teeth from decay. You also want to pay attention to your tongue since it can harbor bacteria. For optimal results, use fluoride toothpaste, so your tooth enamel remains strong. Fluoride also helps repair teeth to prevent cavities in people of all ages.
Rinse after meals
Rinse your mouth using an antimicrobial mouthwash after every meal to keep plaque at bay and prevent gum disease. Using an antimicrobial mouthwash also reduces the amount of acid in your mouth, reducing your risk of cavities. Although it is best to rinse after meals, doing so should not replace everyday brushing. However, if you experience frequent gum disease flare-ups or cannot brush after each meal, your dentist may recommend an antimicrobial rinse for preventative dentistry. Such rinses reduce bacteria levels in the mouth since they contain active ingredients such as chlorhexidine and cetylpyridinium.
Reduce your intake of acidic foods and drinks.
Acidic foods, especially citrus foods, increase the risk of enamel erosion, making it softer and susceptible to cavities. For this reason, it is best to rinse your mouth after eating or drinking acidic foods or drinks. Limit the amount of acidic foods or beverages you consume throughout the day. Even if you have healthy teeth, the enamel can begin to wear away due to regular exposure to acidic levels.
Drinks like soda may have great taste, but due to its high acid content, it can be bad for your teeth. Note that the bacteria in your mouth can break down sugar to acid, meaning avoiding sugary foods or drinks is critical.
Visit your dentist regularly.
Regular dental check-ups (at least twice a year) help you to learn about the state of your teeth and gums and treat any oral issues before they worsen. Dental check-ups also include a deep clean, which helps remove any plaque or tartar from your teeth and gum line. Besides seeing your dentist twice a year, you should visit them as soon as you notice any oral health problems or changes. Early treatment helps prevent serious dental complications like periodontal disease or tooth loss.
Book an appointment with your oral health care provider at Perio & Implant Center of Monterey Bay and the Silicon Valley for a check-up to ensure your teeth and gums are healthy.