Okay, so we’ve learned it’s a good idea to get our teeth cleaned no matter what. Next up is one of the progressions that happen when you don’t get your teeth cleaned every six months, there is a change in medications, some stress in your life or you could be genetically prone to it. This would be GUM DISEASE.
Now, this is where the plaque and tarter in your mouth build up to a point that it starts eating away at your jaw bone. It’s the body’s response to the build up of too much bacteria and plaque and tarter. Everything in your mouth starts to pull away from the irritation source – the bacteria and the tarter – your gums become red and inflamed, they may start to bleed, and the bone that is holding in your tooth in place starts to recede too. This will eventually make your teeth loose and floppy and eventually they will fall out. Yes, it has happened that they come out without much prompting.
Is there a way to avoid this? Well, regular cleanings help. I would also check the side effects of any medications you are taking. Anything that causes dry mouth will help contribute to this. It will also help contribute to lots and lots of cavities. The most common culprits that we see from medications are the psycho-pharmaceuticals or better known as Prosac, Ritalin, Wellbutrin, and any other drug you can think of that helps out with mental disorders. They will all cause dry mouth.
I know stress is sometimes unavoidable. I’ve been through a fair share of my own. I also know it’s really easy to stop taking care of yourself when you’re tired and want nothing more than to go to bed and relax. It also does a number on your immune system. It will either over react to things it doesn’t normally, or it won’t react at all. Either way, it’s murder on your oral heath. So, reduce your stress! Take an extra B-complex if you notice you are under more stress than usual, and maybe see the dentist more often if you are under more stress!
And lastly, genetically prone to gum disease. Now there is a test to find out if you are genetically prone or not, but quite frankly, it doesn’t make a bit of difference once you have the disease. This is a little harder to avoid. I know I have the gene that makes me prone to having gum disease – my grandparents lost their teeth to it, my mom has it, my brother has it, and I could eventually get it. Instead of worrying about it, I just get my teeth cleaned more often than what is recommended.
Next up, we’ll talk about the care needed for gum disease, until then!