Gum disease is often swept under a rug as a condition that's harmless and so common than no one need worry. While some gum disease sufferers will never experience anything more than minor inflammation and pain, others will eventually lose their teeth due to advanced gum disease. If your gums are swollen and painful, or you're seeing streaks of blood in the sink more often than not after brushing or flossing, you have gingivitis, the early stage of gum disease. By acting quickly, you can prevent it from progressing to the point of putting your teeth at risk.
Act Quickly with Proper Oral Hygiene
Gum disease is caused by the buildup of oral bacteria on your teeth and gums. These bacteria feed on the sugars left behind in your mouth after you eat and drink, and they form plaque, the sticky substance found on your teeth. The best way to remove plaque, and the nasty bacteria found within it, is with proper brushing and flossing.
Experts recommend brushing your teeth at least twice per day or after every meal. While you're trying to heal your gum disease, it's especially important to brush your teeth immediately after every meal or snack you consume. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush so you don't irritate your gums more than necessary, and focus on brushing your gums as well as your teeth. Also, floss your teeth once per day. This will remove the plaque and bacteria that build up between your teeth.
Antiseptic Mouthwash Gives Oral Hygiene a Boost
Give your gum disease-fighting routine a boost by following each brushing session with an antiseptic mouthwash. These mouthwashes typically contain a small amount of alcohol, which helps kill any bacteria that remain after brushing and flossing. They're incredibly helpful for cleaning deep grooves. Follow the instructions on your mouthwash bottle – most recommend swishing the rinse around in your mouth for 30 seconds or longer.
Other Helpful Treatment Tips
- While treating your gum disease, and while trying to prevent it from reappearing in the future, it is also wise to avoid sugary drinks during the day. When you drink a sugary liquid, the sugar remains on your teeth and feeds your oral bacteria, exacerbating the gum disease.
- If you do drink sugary drinks, brush your teeth afterwards.
- Salt water rinses can also be useful for soothing sore gums. Mix together a solution of 1 teaspoon natural sea salt in a cup of warm water, and use this as a rinse whenever your gums are feeling sensitive.
If you catch gum disease early, it won't have disastrous consequences on your teeth. If your gums don't seem less sensitive after several weeks of following the above recommendations, see your dentist. He or she may wish to prescribe a special antibacterial rinse or oral antibiotic to help fight the condition more effectively. For more information, contact a clinic such as Able Dental Group.