Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is an inflammatory bacterial infection of the gum tissue surrounding the teeth and jaw bones. Yet, while this common oral disease inflicts half of American adults aged 30 and over, most people do not realize that they have it until the disease has advanced. The following reasons illustrate both the prevalence of gum disease and the importance of regular dental check-ups:
Lack of awareness: The primary reason gum disease is so prevalent is that it is usually asymptomatic until later stages of the disease. If you are an individual who does not seek dental help until something hurts, you are unlikely to diagnose periodontal disease until it has done a good deal of damage.
Inadequate oral hygiene: Bacteria are constantly present in our mouths, but sometimes they get out of hand and start to infect healthy tissue, which causes gingivitis. Keeping bacteria under control can be difficult, as they like to congregate in crevices often inaccessible to your toothbrush. It is vital to engage in consistent brushing, flossing, and fluoride rinsing, but having a dental professional evaluate your teeth for signs of bacterial infection should also be part of your regular oral hygiene regiment.
Smoking: Smoking greatly increases your risk of developing periodontal disease, as it limits your body’s ability to respond to bacterial infection. Smoking introduces toxins to the oral tissue region, while also shrinking blood vessels and crippling your immune system. As a result, you are less able to fight off infection, allowing bad bacteria to flourish and gum disease to develop.
Susceptible to infections: For those coping with a condition that affects your ability to fight infections, you are at a greater risk for developing gum disease. This does not only include those with HIV, leukemia, or diabetes, but those who suffer from stress and those with poor eating habits who do not equip their bodies with the nutrients needed to fight illnesses.
In order to keep your mouth healthy, make an appointment with the professionals at Colorado Advanced Dentistry. We have the experience and technology to address all the dental needs of our Denver clients. Call us today at (720) 420-1103!