There is a strange thing that happens when someone is a car accident. Time seems to slow down, and they often claim to have seen the oncoming car coming but couldn’t move quickly enough to avoid it.
It’s called slow motion perception, and while there isn’t much actual research about it, it reminds me of my patients who have come to me looking for treatment that could have been avoided entirely. And, nine times out of ten, the culprit is gum disease.
Gum disease is in many ways like that slow motion car accident. If you have it, you can see the signs from a mile away, yet more often than not you won’t do anything about it until it is right on top of you. In that case, you’ll be dealing with an expensive, painful problem caused by the advanced stages of gum disease, which usually winds up with a tooth (or more) getting pulled and even more work done to restore your missing teeth.
In the absolute worst case scenarios, advanced gum disease will completely disintegrate the bones of your jaw. If that terrible event should happen, then you will be looking at an extensive, invasive oral surgery involving multiple bone grafting procedures just to be able to use your jaw properly again.
A growing body of scientific evidence also points to several links between advanced gum disease – also known as periodontitis – and many major health problems. It might seem like an odd thought, but there have been proven links between periodontitis and the following diseases:
- Heart disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Low birth weight and prematurely born babies
And that’s just based on what we know now. Any way you look at it, gum disease isn’t an accident that you want to let happen, because once it does, the only thing that can save it is a Kennewick dentist like me with a planing and scaling treatment to eradicate those pockets of nasty bacteria and reset the clock on your smile back to zero.
If that’s the case, then you can’t waste anymore time for those symptoms to begin developing inside of your mouth. I urge you to stop reading and click here to make your appointment right away!
However, if you are still in the beginning stages of gum disease – or better yet, if you don’t have it all (and kudos if that’s the case!) – then what you need is equal parts knowledge and elbow grease. As in all battles, knowledge is power, and with a few simple, yet effective, preventative dentistry tips that you can perform at home, you’ll have won the war against periodontitis before the battle even begins!
Easy Tips For A Difficult Disease
All the knowledge in the world won’t mean a lick if you don’t put a little elbow grease behind it. If you can follow these tips, and keep at them, then you’ll never have to experience the awful side-effects of gum disease.
- Brush, brush, brush! – You’d be surprised how the simplest of tasks can have the biggest of effects, but that’s brushing for you. The bacteria which cause gum disease operate on a 30 hour period, so if you make sure to brush twice every 24 hours, then you’re making sure that it never has enough food particles to feed on in the first place.
- Curb your bad habits – An unpopular notion, but one that I cannot in good conscience go without saying. Excessively drinking alcohol and an addiction to tobacco products (cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, etc.) is only making it harder for your mouth to naturally fight off infections, and giving the bacteria which cause gum disease prime real estate to set up shop.
- A little floss goes a long way – Like brushing, a daily flossing session will do wonders toward gum disease prevention, and in a similar but more thorough way. Keeping the tiny, dark crevices within your smile free from the smallest of food particles will tell gum disease bacteria to take a hike.
- Give me a call – Although the sign of advanced periodontitis are obvious, the preliminary stages of it are not. Without seeing me twice a year for a quick checkup, you could be missing an opportunity to detect precursor bacteria which could already be living in your mouth right now.
So wait are you waiting for? Pick up your phone and give me a call at 509-591-0515 to set up your appointment, or click here to request an appointment, and together we’ll be an unstoppable force in the fight against gum disease!