Why dental hygiene is important for plaque and tartar control in Brentwood
Gum disease is a condition that most American adults have heard about, whether from their dentist or the media. We discuss gum disease with our patients during routine dental visits and closely monitor gum health so that we can identify the smallest signs of irritation and infection. The infectious process of gum disease is rooted in plaque and the bacteria that naturally occur in the mouth. Without regular dental hygiene
(brushing and flossing), it is easy for plaque and tartar
to get out of control. In
family dental practice, we teach patients how to care for teeth at home, and provide gentle professional cleanings for the removal of plaque and tartar.
Within plaque, there may be millions of oral bacteria finding a safe haven. The purpose of brushing twice a day and flossing daily is to remove plaque and the bacteria it hides. If plaque is not removed, the substance will harden into tartar, which is more difficult to remove, and even more welcoming to harmful bacteria.
Stages of gum disease
Gum disease is progressive, beginning with such mild signs that many people miss them. When gum disease first develops as gingivitis, the gums may look slightly red. Bleeding may occur when teeth are brushed or flossed, and bad breath might develop. If these early signs of gum disease are quickly addressed with a professional cleaning and outstanding home care, it is possible to stop the infection process in its tracks.
If, however, the signs of gingivitis are missed or not addressed, gum disease will progress to periodontitis. By this point, it is no longer possible to reverse gum disease. Periodontitis may be recognized as gum recession or even slight puffiness in gum tissue around a tooth or teeth. This puffiness is indicative of periodontal pockets. Treating periodontitis with deep professional cleaning removes bacteria, plaque, and tartar from above and below the gum line.
Several factors affect the overall health of gum tissue. When gum disease is a problem, patients are encouraged to avoid tobacco products and make healthy dietary choices that facilitate balance in the oral ecosystem. At Brentwood Family Dental, we tailor dental care to the needs of each individual patient.
We can help you keep your smile healthy and beautiful with personalized care. Contact us today for your visit.
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