Hardened tartar buildup at the gum line is the primary cause of gum disease. The CDC estimates that 47% of people over 30 years old have gum disease to some degree. The earliest stage of gum disease, is known as gingivitis. Some of the more common symptoms include: red or inflamed gums that may also bleed easily when you brush and floss. This can also be associated with chronic bad breath.
If gingivitis isn’t caught early it will develop into the more dangerous form of gum disease known as periodontitis. This level of infection deep in the gum tissues will eventually cause your gums to recede from the base of your teeth creating pockets of infection near the roots. In time this can even result in a loss of structure in the bones that anchor your teeth in your mouth.
Prevention is the most effective measure against the onset of gum disease. This begins with brushing your teeth, twice each day with a soft bristled toothbrush and abrasive toothpaste to remove food particles and plaque from the surfaces of your teeth.
After you are done brushing you should floss your teeth to clean the spaces between your teeth. Try to work the floss around your teeth in a U shape, then gently run the strand up and down in two to three sweeps to effectively clean the area. Make sure to also up into the gum line as well as behind your back teeth. These areas are often forgotten about, yet can still harbor plaque and tartar.
Your regular dental checkup involves a cleaning procedure to help remove tartar buildup before it can become a serious problem.
If you are concerned about gum disease or your flossing technique, please call us at 970-243-2025 to schedule an appointment.