If there is anything a dental patient hates to hear, it’s that they have gum disease. You’ve just revealed that you have poor oral care habits and prefer to skip out on regular dental visits. But why is it such a bad thing? Let’s meet the periodontal disease known as gingivitis…
Gingivitis is inflammation of the tissues surrounding and supporting the teeth and is most commonly a result of poor dental hygiene. Gingivitis is a very common condition and varies widely in severity. It is characterized by red, swollen gums that bleed easily when teeth are brushed or flossed. Gingivitis is not the same thing as periodontitis, although sometimes a person may be affected by both. Some of the most common risk factors are as follows:
- Smoking or chewing tobacco prevents the gum tissue from being able to heal.
- Crooked, rotated, or overlapping teeth create more areas for plaque and calculus to accumulate and are harder to keep clean.
- Hormonal changes in puberty, pregnancy, and menopause typically correlate with a rise in gingivitis because hormones cause blood vessels to be more susceptible to bacterial and chemical attack.
- Cancer and cancer treatment can make a person more susceptible to infection and increase the risk of gum disease.
- Stress impairs the body’s immune response to bacterial invasion.
- Mouth breathing can be harsh on the gums when they aren’t protected by the lips, causing chronic irritation and inflammation.
- Poor nutrition, such as a diet high in sugar and carbohydrates and low in water intake, will increase the formation of plaque.
- Diabetes mellitus impairs circulation and the gums ability to heal.
- Medications such as anti-seizure medications promote gum disease.
To set up an appointment, call Dr. Middleton’s office in Riverside, CA at 951-688-3442 or through the website.
Dr. Gerald Middleton proudly accepts patients from Riverside and all surrounding areas.