Gum disease is incredibly prevalent here in the United States. In fact, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that almost half of adults over 30 have some form of gum disease. If you’re part of that growing list, you’ll want to address it as soon as possible. Untreated gum disease can cause significant issues in the body, which means now is the time to take action!
What Do I Do If I Have Gum Disease?
You might already have an inkling that you have gum disease. Typical signifies include blood in the sink when you floss or swollen gums. Confirm your suspicions by requesting a professional diagnosis. A dentist or dental hygenist can determine what’s going on by examining the pockets around your teeth.
Inflamed gums pull away from the teeth, creating what’s referred to as ‘pockets’ (extra space around the gums.) We measure pockets on a scale from one to six—one being the healthiest. Accurate measurements allow us to track improvements over time.
Once you have your measurements and your official diagnosis, it’s time for a deep cleaning. Deep cleaning goes under the gum line to clean out all of the bacteria and plaque that’s festering inside. Unfortunately, it’s nearly impossible to reach those places at home, which is why visiting the dentist is vital.
Gum Disease Treatment
There are a couple of gum disease treatment options your dentist may recommend:
First, we’re going to remind you to brush your teeth twice a day and floss once. You may also be prescribed medications, from special mouthwashes to antibiotic gels or pills tucked into the side of your mouth. The aim is to reduce – and ultimately eliminate – the bacteria attacking your gums.
After you’ve used these treatments for a significant amount of time, schedule a follow-up visit to the dentist. We’ll see how your gums have healed and make recommendations based on your progress. Improvements – say your pockets have gone from a five to a two – mean that we are on the right track!
If your gums look the same or look worse, we’ll propose more intense gum disease treatments.
Are you a smoker? Quitting is one of the best things you can do for your teeth and gums.
Can Flossing Reverse Gum Disease?
Yes, in most cases, a commitment to daily flossing can help reverse gum disease, although it depends on the severity of your case. We’ll put it this way: flossing can only help your situation. Food particles, bacteria, and plaque get trapped in and around your mouth. Flossing is a sure-fire way to get rid of that junk, allowing your gums the space and time they need to heal properly.
We’re No Stranger to Gum Disease at Dakota Dental
To keep your situation from developing into something more extreme, it’s essential to schedule regular dentist visits. Learn more about our gum disease treatment (it’s nothing to be scared of—we promise!) At Dakota Dental, we can examine your mouth and make specific recommendations to help you stay on track.
Don’t see a time that works for you? Give us a call at (952) 431.5774, and we’ll see what we can do.