Many people realize that the presence of severe gum disease is the most common high-risk factor for losing teeth. However, not everyone realizes the specific factors that increase their risks of developing gum disease in the first place. The truth is that, with the right care and preventive maintenance, you can successfully prevent gum disease from forming. At our Newhall, CA, dental office, that includes a healthy knowledge of how gum disease forms, and what your unique risk factors for it are. Then, we can help you address those factors to lower those risks and improve your long-term oral health.
Inconsistent hygiene habits
Before gum disease becomes the biggest threat to your smile, it begins as a seemingly minor infection in your gum tissues. Known as gingivitis, this infection is caused by harmful oral bacteria that make up the dental plaque that forms along your gum line. When you aren’t consistent with brushing your teeth twice and flossing at least once every day, these bacteria have a greater chance to accumulate. Eventually, they’ll work their way underneath your gums, causing the inflammation and infection that can lead to more serious gum disease. You might also miss your chance to reverse gingivitis if it does form, which depends on treating it as soon as it develops and before it has a chance to progress.
Influences like alcohol and tobacco
In addition to inadequate hygiene, habits like smoking or chewing tobacco and drinking alcohol excessively can also significantly increase your risks of developing gum disease. Such substances contain hundreds of harmful chemicals that can interfere with the cellular functions of your healthy oral and periodontal tissues. Tobacco in particular is a leading high-risk factor in gum disease development, as well as the development of several forms of cancer and other potentially fatal diseases.
Staying away from your dentist
Cleaning your teeth and living healthier at home go a long way in ensuring your teeth and gums are healthy, but you still need routine care from your dentist to keep them that way. Regular checkups and cleanings, which you should attend at least twice a year, give us the chance to clean away traces of plaque and its calcified form, tartar, that you might have missed. Removing them as soon as possible is vital to preventing them from infecting your gums, and during your visit, we can also check to ensure that this infection hasn’t already begun. If it has, then prompt periodontal treatment may be able to reverse it, or control it before it can grow worse.
Lower your risks of gum disease
When you visit our office regularly for routine preventive care, we can more effectively help you lower your risks of developing gum disease. For more information, schedule a consultation by calling Newhall Dental Arts in Newhall, CA, today at (661) 259-7760.