Gum disease has become incredibly common, with the CDC estimating that nearly 65 million Americans are impacted by it. With symptoms ranging from bad breath to sore and inflamed gums, it’s easy to see why anyone would want to avoid this problem. Unfortunately, most people aren’t aware of the steps they can take to help keep their gums healthy. While it’s true that genetics can play a role in overall dental health, this doesn’t mean there’s nothing that can be done. To get started, the tips for healthy gums below can help immensely.
- Floss Daily
Flossing is something you should do one time per day in order to get food particles out of the crevices of your teeth. This can also help get rid of plaque that builds up along the teeth and gum line, which can lead to both cavities and gum disease. It’s recommended to floss before bed each night, although flossing at any time is better than not doing it at all.
To floss properly, it’s important to do it the right way. Avoid quickly pushing the floss in-between the teeth, as this is unlikely to get rid of anything stuck in the gums. Instead, you should wrap the floss in a c-shape around each tooth and move it in a push-pull motion. This will help eliminate the most plaque while reaching even small crevices that might be holding food or bacteria.
- Stop Smoking
The CDC has stated that because smoking can weaken the immune system, it can make it difficult to fight even a small gum infection. This can then lead to the introduction of gum disease, tooth loss, and extreme tooth decay. Unfortunately, because smoking does deplete oxygen in the bloodstream, this can also make it difficult for gums to heal, so wounds stay open for extended lengths of time. The good news is that quitting smoking is also good for your overall health, so there’s no downside to doing it.
- Regularly Brush
Brushing your teeth twice per day is an important part of keeping your oral health in check. You’ll want to brush a minimum of two minutes each time, as this will help maximize the food particles you get rid of. It’s also important to brush your tongue, as this can be a huge source of bacteria that deteriorates the health of your gums.
If you’re looking for a new toothbrush to invest in, it’s recommended to go for an electric model. These have been shown to get rid of more plaque and gingivitis than traditional manual toothbrushes. However, it’s important not to push too hard with these, as this can deteriorate the enamel on your teeth.
Tip: Replace your toothbrush head every few months or when you see the brush begin to fray. This will ensure your toothbrush works as effectively as possible when it comes to cleaning your teeth and gums.
- Rinse Your Mouth
When you’re finished brushing and flossing, the team at Wagga Wagga Dentist
recommends to rinse your mouth with an ADA-approved mouthwash. Although brushing and flossing do a great job of cleaning your mouth, this will help remove extra food particles and reduce things like plaque, tartar, and gingivitis. There are different flavors you can choose from as well as various formulas with and without alcohol and fluoride.
- Eat the Right Foods
Many people are surprised to learn that certain foods can actually help improve dental health. This includes cheese, which contains calcium that helps build healthy teeth. In addition to this, cheese can help clean teeth by removing plaque as you chew on it. Celery and apples are other gum-healthy foods because they contain high amounts of water and help remove food debris from in-between the teeth.
- Visit Your Dentist
You’ll likely visit your dentist if you end up with a toothache or any other dental emergency that comes your way. However, you should also visit them for two cleanings per year. During these visits, your dentist can inspect your gums for plaque, decay, gum disease, gingivitis, swelling, or redness. They can also perform a thorough cleaning to improve gum health and prevent the progression of deterioration. With preventative care like this, you’ll be reducing chances of running into major gum health issues in the future.
Tip: Talk to your dentist about any health issues you have or medications that you’re taking. Certain conditions and drugs can impact gum and dental health. Your dentist can give you personalized advice for keeping your mouth healthy despite these issues.
- Avoid Unhealthy Foods
You don’t have to cut any foods out of your diet in order to keep your gums healthy. However, you should minimize your exposure to unhealthy foods that are known to increase plaque and gingivitis. These foods and drinks include alcohol, sticky candy, carbonated soft drinks, juices, and sweets. When you do indulge in these, make sure to floss and brush right after in order to get debris and excess sugars out of your gums.
What are the Symptoms of Gum Disease?
It’s always important to inspect your teeth and gums to check for any areas that don’t look like they’re doing well. If you notice any of the following signs of gum disease, then it’s important to visit your dentist right away. The sooner you address any of these issues, the better chance you have of keeping your gums healthy.
– Mouth Sores
– Chronic Bad Breath
– Receding Gums
– Swollen or Red Gums
– Tender Gums
– Bleeding Gums when Brushing or Flossing
Making Gum Health a Priority
With daily eating and drinking, your teeth and gums are in constant contact with particles that can lead to deterioration. While regular brushing and flossing are important, dental checkups should also be made a priority. With this type of well-rounded care, you may be able to avoid gum disease while improving your dental health overall. This may even help you prevent gum or tooth pain so you can live more comfortably while eating what you want.