It's National Gum Care Month

It's National Gum Care Month

Posted by SHEFFIELD SQUARE DENTAL on Sep 13 2017, 10:00 AM

Gum disease, otherwise known as periodontal disease, is a common condition that affects roughly half of all American adults aged 30 or older. When plaque and tartar buildup on your teeth, they irritate your gums and cause an infection that can spread to the rest of your body. Plaque buildup can also cause your gum line to recede and create tooth sensitivity as well. It is important to maintain healthy gums through proper brushing and flossing to avoid a buildup of bacteria in your mouth that can lead to gum disease. 

How to Identify Gum Disease Early

When patients come in with complaints of pain in their gums, Dr. Smith first performs a thorough examination of the patient’s mouth to look for signs of early gum disease. These signs include:

  • Red or swollen gums that bleed easily when brushing or flossing
  • Receding gums, causing gaps between teeth
  • Changes in the way your teeth fit together and bite patterns
  • Bad breath that doesn’t improve with oral hygiene efforts
  • Tenderness or inflammation of the gumline
  • Loose teeth

If any of these symptoms are present, we will recommend the patient get a full-mouth checkup and cleaning as soon as possible. Early detection and treatment of gum disease is the best way to avoid more invasive procedures such as periodontal surgery.

Tips for Preventing Gum Disease

The best way to prevent gum disease is to brush and floss regularly, as well as follow a nutritious diet. Here are some other tips to follow:

  • Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables for vitamins B and C, which support healthy gum tissues.
  • Drink plenty of water to keep your mouth hydrated, especially when you’re exercising or spending time in hot weather.
  • Use a toothbrush with a soft-bristled head. This will prevent irritation to your gums.
  • Stop smoking, which is the leading cause of gum disease in the U.S.
  • Visit the dentist every six months for a cleaning and a visual inspection of your smile.

What Are the Stages of Gum Disease?

If you notice bleeding, swelling, or redness of your gums, this could be a sign that you have gingivitis, the first stage of gum disease. To treat this problem before it progresses to more severe stages, you’ll need to visit your dentist for an evaluation and treatment recommendations. Bleeding gums can be the result of brushing too hard or using abrasive toothpaste. It can also be an indicator of more advanced-stage gum issues such as periodontitis. This early stage is also reversible with proper oral care at home and professional dental care from a dentist.

For serious cases of gingivitis, your dentist may recommend that you see a periodontist, a specialist in gum disease. In more severe cases, you may have to undergo surgical intervention to fully restore your oral health.

To start with prevention, remember to brush your teeth twice every day with a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride-containing toothpaste. You should also floss every day to remove any plaque or food debris that may still be left behind after brushing. Finally, avoid tobacco products. Smoking can further irritate your gums and lead to gum disease.

Call us at 773-880-2310 or email us at to schedule your appointment. Visit Sheffield Square Dental Care at 2835 N. Sheffield Ave, Suite 305, Chicago, IL 60657.

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2835 N Sheffield Ave Suite 305, Chicago, IL 60657

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