Preventing Gum Disease
Dental research has shown that adults over the age of 35 lose more teeth to gum diseases than from cavities and at least three out of four adults are affected by gum disease at some time in their life. The best way to prevent cavities and periodontal diseases is by focusing on the aspects of the disease that are controllable like the presence of dental plaque. Hence, daily thorough tooth brushing and flossing techniques, and regular professional examinations and cleanings are the beginning of the prevention process. Unfortunately, even with the most diligent home dental care, people can still develop some form of periodontal disease. Once this disease starts, professional intervention is necessary to prevent its progress or to affect repair.
Other important factors that can negatively affect the health of your gums include: tobacco use, stress, clenching and grinding teeth, some medications, and poor nutrition.
Periodontal Disease & Tobacco
We have talked about preventing gum disease by controlling the factors that are controllable and tobacco use is no exception. Dr. Noraian understands the tobacco cessation is not easy and he works with your physician to help work out a plan that is best for you. Regardless of what treatment options you consider, recurrence of gum disease is more prevalent among patients who continue to use tobacco after being successfully treated. You are probably familiar with the links between tobacco use and lung disease, cancer, and heart disease. Modern studies have now linked periodontal disease with tobacco use. When comparing smokers to non-smokers, periodontal disease is more severe in smokers and tobacco-users. When you smoke, there is a greater incidence of calculus to form on the teeth, deeper pockets are created between gums and teeth, and there is a greater loss of the bone and fibers that hold teeth in your mouth. In addition, your chance of developing oral cancer increases with the use of smokeless tobacco.
Chemicals in tobacco such as nicotine and tar also slow down healing, by reducing the circulation necessary for healing and lowering the predictability of success following periodontal treatment. Quitting smoking and tobacco-use can have numerous benefits for your overall and periodontal health.