Periodontal disease is caused by a build-up of bacteria and can lead to inflamed gums. If left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to more serious problems, such as tooth loss. In this post, the team at Bay Area Dental Specialists discusses how to prevent periodontal disease.

Practice Good Dental Hygiene

Regular brushing and flossing are critical to fighting off gum disease. Brush twice a day and floss daily to disrupt the growth of bacteria that can cause inflammation in the gums. Using a daily mouthwash can also help you reduce plaque and freshen your breath. You should also brush your tongue, which can be a place where bacteria like to gather.

Avoid Smoking

Smoking can significantly increase your risk of developing periodontal disease. Smoking can also stain your teeth and lead to other serious health problems.

Get Regular Dental Cleanings

No matter how well you brush and floss, you still need professional cleanings at least twice a year. Dental hygienists have special tools and training to remove plaque that you can’t fix with brushing and flossing. They can also spot signs of periodontal disease before it becomes more severe.

Eat a Balanced Diet

Periodontal disease may be correlated to other health problems, such as heart disease. Many of these conditions are related to inflammation.

If you’re not eating well, your immune system may be compromised and less able to fight off infections. A balanced diet, including plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, can strengthen your immune system and boost your overall health.

Understand the Risk Factors

If a family member has dealt with gum disease, you may also be at a higher risk of developing this condition. Your risk of periodontal disease also increases as you get older and if you don’t have good oral hygiene habits. Health problems such as diabetes may also be a risk factor for gum disease.

Be on the lookout for any of the following symptoms:

  • Redness of the gums
  • Gums that bleed after brushing or flossing
  • Swollen gums
  • Bad breath
  • Receding gums
  • Loose teeth

If you experience any of these symptoms, contact your dentist. Gum disease can often be treated with scaling, root planing and regular maintenance cleanings. Your dentist can also educate you about how to practice good oral hygiene at home.

To learn more about gum disease, contact Bay Area Dental Specialists. Call or email our San Jose cosmetic dentistry office to schedule your next appointment.