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Greensboro, NC 27408

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April 29, 2019

5 Ways To Keep Your Gums Healthy

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Gum disease, or periodontitis, is a common infection that damages the soft tissue and bone supporting the tooth. It starts when plaque, a sticky film-like substance that’s filled with bacteria, builds up under and along the gum line. Gum disease can lead to tooth loss, but steps can be taken to prevent and even reverse gum disease.

1. Brush your teeth properly

The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends that people brush their teeth at least twice a day using a soft-bristle toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Moving the toothbrush in short strokes, press gently and brush the teeth at a 45-degree angle to the gumline. Also, don’t forget to replace your toothbrush every 3 to 4 months, or sooner if you have been sick or the bristles begin to fray.

2. Choose the right toothpaste

The dental aisle in most stores is a little overwhelming and contains a variety of different toothpastes. It is recommended that a paste with the American Dental Association Seal of Approval be chosen. Fluoride-containing toothpastes are also encouraged as they make the outer surface of the teeth more resistant to acid exposure.

3. Floss daily

Flossing helps remove plaque and food particles that are stuck between your teeth and under your gums. If the plaque and food remain in these areas, a hard build-up called tarter develops. Only a dentist or hygienist can remove tarter. If tarter is not removed, oxygenated blood is unable to reach the gums and surrounding bone and this leads to gum disease. The ADA recommends flossing at least once a day, and it doesn’t matter whether that is in the morning, after lunch or before bedtime.

4. Get regular dental check-ups

Regularly scheduled dental checkups, usually include a professional cleaning that removes tartar from the teeth and eliminates any plaque that a person may have missed when brushing those hard to reach places. Your dentist also detects early gum disease symptoms at routine exams.

5. Stop smoking

Smoking is strongly associated with the onset of gum disease because it weakens the immune system and makes it harder to fight off a gum infection.

Most people tend to overlook their gums when it comes to oral health and instead, focus on getting a bright, straight smile. However, a healthy mouth also requires healthy gums. Even if you are cavity-free and have the whitest smile among your friends, that does not make you immune to gum disease.

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Greensboro, NC 27408
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