Did you know that 75% of American adults have some level of gum disease? And most don’t even suspect that they have it! Why not? Because this infection is sneaky. It’s PAINLESS until very advanced. Often, your first clue that a serious problem even exists is when you lose a tooth or start suffering from painful abscesses.
First, a basic definition: when microbial plaque and calcium build up on teeth, they often cause Gingivitis, a gum infection. Untreated Gingivitis can lead to Periodontitis, a more serious inflammation, which damages the bone supporting your teeth — and will eventually lead to tooth loss.
Here’s the really scary part — very few people realize how many other parts of the body are affected by this condition. And its effects are both wide-ranging and significant. Gum disease has proven connections with coronary artery disease, stroke, pneumonia, and diabetes. In fact, a growing body of research shows that the bacteria of any inflammation travel throughout the body and cause damage far from the initial infection site.
So, how can you avoid the unpleasant circumstances connected to gum disease? Here are five simple, yet crucial steps you can take right now:
- Don’t smoke! Not only is smoking bad for your lungs, it has the following negative effects on your gums:
- Increases the amount of plaque on your teeth.
- Can lead to deep pockets between your teeth and gums.
- Promotes bone loss and tissue loss inside the structures that support your teeth.
And cigarettes aren’t the only culprit – pipes, cigars, chew – so if you want healthy gums, avoid any and ALL tobacco products!
- Eat a nutritious, balanced diet. A healthy body promotes healthy gums. In fact, in many cases gum disease can be directly connected to poor NUTRITION habits. Make sure to eat a well-balanced diet packed with plenty of protein, minerals, vitamins, and other components. Vitamins C and B are both very important to healthy gums – so load up on your fruits and green leafy vegetables if you want that smile to last.
- Live an Active, Youthful Lifestyle. Do at least some amount of exercise every day and maintain a healthy weight. Learn which BMI (body-mass index) level is appropriate for you. “Why is this necessary?” you ask… because each of the familiar behaviors now known as “LIFESTYLE RISK FACTORS” accelerates the aging process. (E.g., Smoking, obesity, inactivity, drug or alcohol abuse, and so on.) A healthy diet combined with a healthy lifestyle helps keep the years at bay and maintains your body’s natural resistance to disease
- Brush and Irrigate. We know… you know… everybody knows. Brushing isn’t enough. You really do need to irrigate and irrigate two times per day. Doing your part to remove the plaque that builds up below the gum line will go a very long way towards keeping your gums (and teeth) in tip-top shape. So, at the risk of being tedious, do the right thing. Brush your teeth at least two to three times a day. And buy a Hydrofloss Magnetic water irrigator and use it regularly! Tell them, I sent you and they will give you a great discount.!
- Get regular medical and dental check-ups. Finally, don’t let your health providers become strangers, especially your dentist. Regular, professional cleaning by a dental professional helps keep your teeth and gum line free from the plaque that leads to gum disease. And working with your doctor to stay healthy is critical to the overall balance you need for a healthy life and healthy gums.
Here’s the bottom line: Healthy Body, Healthy Gums. Take the time to invest in your overall health and well-being. It not only will pay off in how you look and feel, it will help ensure that you can have a healthy, happy smile that will last a lifetime.