Gum disease is an inflammation of the gum line that can progress to affect the bone that surrounds and supports your teeth. The three stages of gum disease — from least to most severe — are gingivitis, periodontitis and advanced periodontitis
All gum disease is caused by plaque. Plaque is a film of bacteria which forms on the surface of the teeth every day. Many of the bacteria in plaque are completely harmless, but there are some that have been shown to be the main cause of gum disease. To prevent and treat gum disease, you need to make sure you remove all the plaque from your teeth every day. This is done by brushing and flossing
In recent years gum disease has been linked with general health conditions such as diabetes, strokes, cardiovascular disease. More research is needed to understand how these links work but there is more and more evidence that having a healthy mouth and gums can help improve your general health and reduce the costs of medical treatment
Smoking can also make gum disease worse. The gums are affected because smoking causes a lack of oxygen in the bloodstream, so the infected gums don’t heal. Gum disease is still a major cause of tooth loss in adults
Your dental team will remove all plaque and tartar from your teeth. You will also be shown how to remove plaque successfully yourself, cleaning all the surfaces of your teeth thoroughly and effectively. This may take a number of sessions with the dental team. A good oral care routine at home with brushing and inter-dental cleaning is the most important thing you can do to help prevent gum disease getting worse
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