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How can periodontal disease be prevented?

How can periodontal disease be prevented?

Periodontitis is one of the most common dental diseases and can lead to tooth loss if not addressed. Prevention is straightforward: maintain a healthy lifestyle and practice good oral hygiene by brushing twice a day, flossing, and regularly visiting the dentist for professional cleanings and timely treatments. These habits significantly reduce the risk of developing periodontal disease. Now, let’s delve deeper into it.

What is periodontitis?

The periodontium is the set of tissues that anchor the tooth to the bone, with the gums being a primary component. This is why periodontitis is often referred to as gum disease. However, it also involves other parts, such as the fibrous apparatus and the cementum layer.

Periodontitis is an infectious inflammation of the periodontium. In its early stages, it is quite treatable and can be completely managed with preventive measures. Despite this, advanced periodontitis is dangerous, leading to tooth loss and the destruction of jaw bone tissue.

While good oral hygiene generally prevents periodontitis, there are other factors that can cause or increase the likelihood of developing this disease, including:

  • Improper bite
  • Smoking
  • Alcoholism
  • Genetic diseases
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Stress
  • Pregnancy
  • Allergies
  • Tooth misalignment
  • Involuntary grinding of teeth

Periodontitis progresses through several stages:

Early Stage: The disease manifests as bleeding gums and changes in the mucosa. In healthy individuals, the mucosa is bright pink, but with periodontitis, it turns blue. Swelling and itching are common symptoms.

Second Stage: At this stage, pus may be released, and significant pain can occur while chewing. The gaps between teeth may widen. Treatment is still possible at this stage to prevent further damage.

Third and Fourth Stages: These advanced stages involve irreversible changes, such as tooth loss and the destruction of the jaw bone.

Best way to prevent periodontal disease

Best way to prevent periodontal disease

Even with perfect preventive measures, there is still a possibility of developing periodontitis in its initial stages. However, this is not something to fear, as the disease is successfully treatable. To minimize the likelihood of developing periodontitis, our Okotoks dental Crystal Smiles recommends:

  1. Maintain regular oral hygiene, brushing at least twice a day with appropriate toothpaste.
  2. Floss after meals and rinse your mouth.
  3. Use an irrigator at least once a day to remove food debris and massage the gums.
  4. Get professional dental cleanings at least twice a year.
  5. Have preventive examinations by a dentist 2-3 times a year and get timely treatment for dental caries.
  6. Avoid bad habits, especially alcohol and smoking.
  7. Lead a healthy lifestyle and consume nutritious foods rich in vitamins.
  8. Manage and eliminate stress as much as possible.

Following this comprehensive regimen is the best way to prevent periodontal disease, though it can be challenging to adhere to all these criteria consistently, especially when it comes to stress management.

How to prevent periodontal disease from getting worse?

Not everyone can avoid periodontal disease. Statistics show that 7 out of 10 people in Canada have experienced it at least once.

It’s important to note that you can only prevent periodontitis at home during its first stage. If the disease progresses to the second stage, marked by pus and pain, it requires urgent treatment and professional dental care. The best option would be an Okotoks family dentistry that already knows your heredity. 

When periodontitis worsens, continue following the comprehensive regimen described above, with special attention to oral hygiene. After every meal, rinse your mouth thoroughly and floss. Eliminate any bad habits completely. You need to become diligent about your dental care to ensure periodontitis disappears and poses no further threat.

During the first stage of periodontitis, it’s normal for inflamed and sensitive gums to bleed when flossing or using an irrigator. It’s crucial to monitor changes. If there is no improvement within a month, it’s time to consult a dentist.

Contact us to set up an appointment.

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Crystal Smiles Team