According to the Canadian Dental Association, 70% of adults have some form of gum disease. This is a very sobering statistic considering what we now know regarding the presence of oral bacteria and the effect it has on our overall health. Gum disease can range greatly in severity and is treated in the dental office by your dentist and dental hygienist based on your individual needs. Once you have received a diagnosis of gum disease from your dental professional and had a professional hygiene appointment (cleaning) to remove bacteria, there are a few things that you can do immediately to help improve the health of your teeth and gums.
- Start Flossing. Flossing or otherwise cleaning in between the teeth is the only way to remove the plaque and bacteria from those hard to reach areas. With brushing alone, it can be estimated that you are missing 30% of the tooth surfaces. Removal of bacteria is the single most important thing you can do at home to help improve your oral health. For other methods of interproximal cleaning, please see our blog regarding Alternatives to Flossing.
- Quit Smoking. We all know how horrible smoking is for your overall health, but did you realize it is a huge contributor to gum disease and bone loss? Please ask if you need help with quitting, dental professionals are trained in smoking cessation.
- Buy a Waterpik. The Waterpik is designed not only to help clean between the teeth, but to flush out bacteria under the gumline. Waterpik even has a special tip for patients with “deep pockets” in their gums.
- Use a Mouthrinse. We like to recommend the X-Pur Opti-Rinse high fluoride rinse to help neutralize the environment in the mouth. This brand will help to reduce the bacteria that caused gum disease as well as the bacteria that causes cavities by 99% while having a pleasant flavour and being gentle on the delicate tissues in the mouth.
- Eat a Balanced Diet. Vitamins and minerals are essential to overall health. Calcium, vitamin D and vitamin C are just a few that will help with your bone, teeth and gum health. With a strong foundation through good nutrition, your oral health can be improved.
Some forms of gum disease are reversible if diagnosed early. The best chance of having an early diagnosis while still in the reversible stages is regular visits to your dental office. Please give us a call at (705) 792-0079 so that we may work with you to develop a treatment plan tailored to you and your unique dental needs!