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Gum Disease is Dangerous

Gum disease is a very serious problem in India. More than 90% population suffers from this disease. It is also the major cause of tooth loss after the age of 30 years. Some people may be familiar with the name pyorrhea, this term is not used now.

Our teeth are anchored in the jawbone. Thousands of small fibers, which attach the tooth to the jawbone, are called periodontal fibers. If these fibers get infected, the tooth becomes loose and falls out. We do not see these fibers, what we see is the gum covering over tooth. Bleeding gums is the first sign of gum disease and should be taken seriously. If the gum bleeding is not attended to, the gum disease progresses, involving periodontal fibers and the treatment becomes more extensive.

People with diabetes, nutritional deficiencies and some systemic diseases are more likely to have gum disease. Smokers also have more gum problems. During pregnancy, the gum becomes swollen easily and bleeds because of hormonal changes in the body. Thus pregnant ladies and people with diabetes should take extra care and see their dentist regularly.

Spoils health and causes heart problems: When gum and deep fibers get infected the pus formation takes place in the pockets around tooth and this pus is regularly swallowed by the person (normally you swallow about 500 times a day), which is harmful to his body. A recent American research has clearly shown that people with such gum infections send bacteria into blood regularly and these people have the risk of heart disease as high as smokers.

You must thus never underestimate the importance of healthy gums. Most important thing to maintain gum health is regular brushing. Brush after breakfast and after dinner. If there are no food particles sticking on to the teeth, they are less likely to get infected. When food particles are present on the teeth, they are acted upon by the bacteria, producing acids and harmful chemicals.

Calculus: This term is used to describe the hard deposits on teeth, which form over a period of time. Despite taking best care in brushing these deposits form on the teeth and must be cleaned by the dentist about once a year. Amount of calculus formation depends on the nature of one’s saliva and maximum calculus forms on the backside of lower front teeth.

In addition to brushing, it is also a good habit to massage gums with your finger. People who have more gum problems should use extra methods to clean teeth. One such device resembles a silk thread, known as "dental floss". Tooth brushing cleans only the outer and inner sides of teeth but not their contacting surfaces. The floss is gently slipped into the area between two teeth without injuring gums and then rubs and cleans the side surfaces of teeth. Some other devices like toothpick also can be used with care. Water pick is not yet marketed in India, it throws a thin jet of water at a speed between the teeth, cleaning them effectively.

So when you see the gums are swollen or bleed on brushing or touching, go to your dentist for cleaning. Diseased gums also shrink over a period of time and expose more of tooth surface making them sensitive to cold and hot temperatures.

Some people believe that teeth become loose after cleaning. That is not correct. Your dentist using high-speed instruments does cleaning of teeth. When done correctly, it should make your teeth better. There may be a temporary increase in the mobility of teeth immediately after cleaning, but if the cleaning has been done correctly and completely and you maintain by brushing and messaging, within a week teeth will become normal. Mouthwash is not usually necessary, use only if your dentist advises. Mouth wash and special toothpastes contain certain strong chemicals and their permanent use is not desirable.

Infected gums not only affect your health they also are the main cause of bad breath which becomes a strong negative point of your personality. So do take care of teeth and have your teeth last lifetime. And of course have a fresh breath and shining smile.


Further Reading:

  1. Gum Disease can lead to Preterm Birth
  2. Gum Disease can increse chances of Heart Attack