Gum disease is unfortunately common, with nearly half of all adults in the United States having some form of gum disease . Catching gum disease early can help you keep your treatment to a minimum and reverse the condition to restore your smile.
To successfully treat gum disease, your dentist will conduct a deep cleaning, called a gum scaling and root planing procedure, but it also may require additional treatment steps. Your dentist will let you know what to expect during your appointment. However, once your smile is on its way to being healthy again, what are some steps you can take to continue treating your gum disease at home?
If you’ve had your wisdom teeth removed, your dentist may have suggested rinsing your mouth with saltwater to help your tissue heal and prevent infection. Turns out, the same is true for gum disease. Rinsing with saltwater may help lower inflammation, decrease the oral bacteria seen in gum disease, and promote healing of your gum tissue .
Sip Green Tea
Green tea, which non-oxidized version of black tea, has been shown to have many health benefits, from cognitive benefits such as improved mood and memory to protective benefits against cancer and heart disease. But research has also shown that green tea can lower the inflammation associated with gum disease, and can fight oral bacteria involved in gum disease as well .
Give Yourself a Professional Flossing
One of the reasons gum disease develops is because plaque and food particles aren’t being regularly removed from between the teeth with proper flossing. If you’ve been diagnosed with gum disease, it’s not too late to redefine your flossing habits. Use plenty of floss, form a “C” shape around each tooth, and gently floss the sides of your teeth and just underneath the gumline . Be sure not to go too far underneath your gum tissue, as this could encourage gum recession.
Although it can be tempting to give your teeth a good, thorough brushing, this doesn’t mean using a stiff-bristled toothbrush or brushing your teeth aggressively. In fact, aggressive brushing can damage gum tissue and cause gums to pull back from the teeth in gum recession. If you haven’t already, switch to a soft-bristled toothbrush and brush gently to protect your gum tissue and encourage healing.
Don’t Forget Your Vitamins
Research links deficiency in certain vitamins and minerals with gum inflammation and disease, especially vitamin D . Following up with your physician to ensure you’re not deficient in any essential nutrients can help you support gum health to encourage healing from gum disease and help prevent it from reoccurring in the future.
How Healthy Are Your Gums?
If your gums bleed when you brush your teeth, look puffy, or are tender and sensitive, you could be experiencing signs of gum disease. Follow up with your experienced dentist today to check your gum health and put steps in place to keep your gum tissue as healthy as possible.
Remember, healthy teeth need healthy gums!