Gum disease is the most prevalent oral disease plaguing Americans, and it stems from the outgrowth of bacteria. Always present in the mouth, the latter cling to leftover food particles (especially sugars) and feed on them. As hundreds of different types of bacteria gather, they form a sticky, clear substance called plaque that coats the teeth and gums. Untreated, the harmful intruder begins to seep beneath the gumline and cause a host of problems – gum disease in St. Peter being one of them. As you read on, your dentist reveals who’s most vulnerable to this disease and how it can be treated.
Who’s at Risk of Gum Disease?
Given that over 85% of adult Americans have some form of gum disease, everybody is susceptible to this condition if excellent oral health and regular dental visits aren’t maintained. Here’s how the disease progresses:
- Gingivitis – In this early stage of the disease, patients may experience puffy, swollen, irritated and red gums that bleed easily.
- Moderate Gum Disease – If the disease is not addressed in time, the connective tissues and fibers can be permanently damaged, and the gum tissue may start to recede.
- Advanced Gum Disease – In its more advanced form, gum disease can destroy the connective tissues, fibers and bones and dissolve the roots of the teeth, leaving them vulnerable to falling out.
An Effective Way to Treat Gum Disease
One of the latest and more effective ways of treating gum disease is with the PerioProtect method. It allows patients to treat the harmful bacteria that lead to gum disease in the comfort of their own home. Patients are given medication that is applied by wearing special-designed trays.
The medication works it way beneath the gumline and into the pockets to clear away bacteria and revitalize the gums. The trays are typically worn 2-3 times a day for 10-15 minutes each session. Your dentist will make a final determination about how long you’ll need to continue treatment based on the severity of your infection.
More Frequent Visits
Usually, patients are advised to visit the dentist every six months for preventive care, but if you have a history of gum disease, then you’ll need to be seen more frequently to make sure the symptoms haven’t returned. As mentioned earlier, the more consistent you are at brushing and flossing your teeth (the main oral hygiene practices) daily will also contribute to preserving your oral health.
If you have bleeding gums, a constantly dry mouth, bad breath or other signs of a decline in your oral health, then don’t hesitate to reach out to your dentist in St. Peter to get the treatment you need.
About the Author
A graduate of the University of Minnesota, Dr. Jenny Miller has been practicing dentistry for 14 years in the St. Peter area. Still, she remains driven to learn more and further hone her skills, which is why she takes continuing education courses annually. Dr. Miller helps patients recover from gum disease at Valley View Dental, and she can be reached for more information through her website.