Have you ever watched the show MythBusters? Two guys use the scientific method to test various myths and urban legends. They along with their team set up experiments to prove or disprove the myth in question. Well, we won’t have to go that far. But, there are myths about your oral health we need to clear up. And, it’s not about your teeth. Ready to bust myths?.
What Is Gum Disease?
Gum disease is an infection of the tissues and bone surrounding and supporting your teeth. Plaque, the sticky film of bacteria constantly forming on our teeth, causes the infection. The official name for gum disease is periodontal disease.
Gum Disease Myths
- Bleeding gums are not a big deal. Swollen red gums that bleed easily can be a sign of gum disease. If your gums bleed when you brush and floss your teeth, come see us.
- Poor oral hygiene causes gum disease. Poor oral hygiene contributes to gum disease, but it’s not the only risk factor. Tobacco use, stress, genetics, and poor diet are other risk factors for developing gum disease.
- Daily flossing is unnecessary. Not flossing enough is a factor in the rising rates of gum disease. Floss every day to improve oral health and reduce your risk of getting gum disease.
- Gum disease isn’t common. Approximately 50 percent of people over the age of 30 have gum disease and the risk increases with age. Practice good oral hygiene and watch for signs of gum disease such as bleeding gums and bad breath.
- No cavities means no gum disease. Many people have gum disease and they don’t know it because it can begin without symptoms. Being cavity-free doesn’t mean you can’t have gum disease.
- Tooth loss comes with gum disease. When it’s caught in its early stages, it is usually reversible. If you’re diagnosed with gum disease, we can plan treatment to help you keep it under control. For advanced cases of gum disease, there are tooth replacement options available.
- Gum disease only affects oral health. Gum disease is linked to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and other conditions. When you have gum disease, you have bacteria in your mouth that can spread throughout your body.
Now we’ve busted myths about gum disease, what’s next? Pay extra attention to your gum health. Always brush your teeth twice daily and floss at least once a day. Get your regular cleanings and exams. If you believe you have gum disease, call my office to schedule an appointment.
Dr. Ruth Roach Morgan