Gum disease has multiple stages. First, it starts off as gingivitis, and usually doesn’t need professional attention and can be treated by brushing at least twice a day and flossing after every meal. If it progresses to periodontitis, it means that the gingivitis has progressed and you need to ask your dentist about treatment options. If it becomes advanced periodontitis, you are at risk of losing your teeth and having permanent damage.
Here are a few ways you are making your gum disease worse instead of better:
- Smoking – If you are a smoker, you are putting all of your teeth and the rest of your body at high risk for disease. Smoking irritates your whole mouth from teeth to gums and also accumulates tartar which could be a disaster if you have gum disease.
- Strong Toothpaste – Strong whitening or cleaning toothpastes have harsh chemicals that are meant to brush away tarter and plaque. If you have gum disease, you should use gentler toothpastes so that you don’t irritate your gums further.
- Hard Toothbrushes – Select a soft toothbrush to use and make sure that you’re not brushing hard. Brush in gentle circles to release food, plaque and tartar from your teeth.
- Grinding Your Teeth – Even though it seems like grinding your teeth won’t directly affect your gums, grinding puts stress and pressure on your teeth, which does affect your gums.
- Over Flossing – Flossing is key, but you want to make sure you are not cutting into your gums. Floss slowly and gently and focus on removing food from between the teeth instead of going back and forth between your teeth.
Dr. Lorraine Burio of Candlewood Dental Care has been treating and educating patients for over twenty-five years. Our office serves the New Fairfield, New Milford, Danbury, and Sherman areas of CT and Pawling, Patterson and Putnam Lake of New York. You can call us at 203-746-1200.