Studies suggest that people with gum disease could be more likely to suffer severe complications related to COVID-19. This is due to the link between inflamed gum tissue and the body’s overall inflammatory response.
When your body is fighting an existing infection, your health could be at risk if another illness threatens you. Therefore, taking care of your gums and preventing periodontal disease are more crucial now than ever.
About half of American adults struggle with gum disease, an infection of the gum tissue. Despite its prevalence, people can suffer major health problems if they do not seek treatment for it. Read on to learn warning signs of gum disease as well as how your dentist can help resolve your periodontal concerns.
Do I Have Gum Disease?
Gingivitis, the early stage of gum disease, often presents with visible symptoms. Patients may notice swelling, bleeding, or soreness in their gums if they have this infection. If the disease advances to reach the teeth and jaw, patients may also experience bad breath, looseness in the teeth, and even tooth loss.
Gum disease does not always have these symptoms though. Some people will not notice any alterations in their smiles despite having this infection. This is why continuing to see your dentist for routine check-ups is so important.
Your dentist will check your gums for signs of this disease and provide swift treatment to get rid of it before it causes irreversible harm to your smile. It is easier to treat when diagnosed early, so visit your dentist twice per year or as directed.
How Can My Dentist Treat Gum Disease?
If you contract gum disease, you cannot get rid of it on your own. You will need periodontal therapy from your dentist to eradicate this infection in your gums.
The dentist can begin treating you by thoroughly cleaning your teeth. They will clear away excess bacteria from your smile, especially deep in the gum pockets, with a cleaning method called scaling and root planing.
If the infection persists, your dentist may suggest oral surgery to target the damaged tissue in the gums. They can remove these areas and use gum grafts if needed to rebuild healthy gum tissue.
The dentist may also ask that you use an antibacterial rinse at home to balance the natural bacteria in your mouth. This will reduce your risk of oral infections and alleviate uncomfortable periodontal symptoms.
Some people may be more susceptible to gum disease due to underlying health issues. Consult with your dentist to develop a personalized preventative care plan for your gums. This may involve changing your diet, habits, or your oral care supplies.
You can keep gum disease at bay by practicing good oral hygiene and maintenance at home. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily to stop plaque from spreading bacteria that can infect your gums. Care like this can help you avoid more intense gum disease treatment.