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The Vital Importance of Periodontal Disease Maintenance: A Comprehensive Guide
Beneath every healthy smile is a pair of healthy gums holding everything together. And if you want that smile to stay healthy, you’ve got to pay attention to your periodontal health. Periodontal disease, also called gum disease, affects millions of people worldwide. If left untreated, this disease can have far-reaching consequences--not just hurting your smile, but your entire body. Let’s talk about why periodontal disease maintenance is crucial for your overall health and well-being, and how you can keep your gums healthy for the long term.
Understanding Periodontal Disease
Ignoring periodontal disease can lead to severe consequences. Gingivitis, if left untreated, can progress to periodontitis, causing pockets to form between the teeth and gums. These pockets harbor even more bacteria, leading to infection and more inflammation. Ultimately, this can result in tooth loss and significant damage to the jawbone.
Perhaps even more dangerous, though, is what happens when the bacteria from the mouth gets into your bloodstream. That dangerous bacteria can then travel through your entire body, causing problems at every stop. In fact, research has shown a link between periodontal disease and systemic health problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, respiratory issues, and more.
The Role of Periodontal Disease Maintenance
If you’ve been diagnosed with periodontal disease, it is vital that you work hard to maintain it. (Unfortunately, there is no cure for advanced gum disease). That maintenance involves a combination of professional dental care and diligent oral hygiene at home. Your dentist or hygienist will work with you to create a treatment and maintenance plan that will likely include you coming in more often for dental visits (usually every 3-4 months).
During these visits, your dentist or hygienist will perform cleanings, scaling and root planing (deep cleaning), and assess the ongoing health of your gums and teeth. At home, it is just as important that you establish good oral care routines, including brushing, flossing, and using antimicrobial treatments like mouthwash or Perio Protect.
Make sure your habits include:
- Proper Brushing Techniques:
Brush your teeth at least twice a day using fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristle toothbrush. Brush gently in a circular motion to avoid damaging your gums.
- Flossing and Interdental Cleaning:
Clean between your teeth daily using floss or interdental brushes to remove debris and plaque from areas that your toothbrush can’t reach.
- Mouthwash and Antimicrobial Agents: Consider using an antimicrobial mouthwash or other recommended agents like Perio Protect to further reduce bacteria in your mouth.
- Balanced Diet for Oral Health:
Consume a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains to support your oral health and overall well-being.
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Benefits of Periodontal Disease Maintenance
By taking proactive steps, you can reduce your risk of losing teeth or bone, and protect your entire body. With the right maintenance at your dentist’s office and at home, you’ll be able to enjoy a healthy smile that lasts a lifetime.
The most important thing is to stay on top of your gum disease. Keep an eye out for warning signs such as bleeding gums, persistent bad breath, or changes in the appearance of your gums. If you notice any concerning symptoms, don't hesitate to consult your dentist or periodontist for guidance.
If you’re ready to beat gum disease, we’re here to help! Schedule an appointment today to meet with our doctors and make a customized plan to maintain and improve your periodontal disease.
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