Gingivitis and Periodontitis
Alternate Names : Swollen Gums, Gum Infection, Gingivostomatitis, Trench Mouth, Pyorrhea
What can be done to prevent the disease?
Gingivitis and periodontitis are preventable diseases. Simple attention to everyday oral hygiene and regular visits to the dentist and hygienist are all that is necessary to prevent this disease process.
Specific oral hygiene measures are:
Brush with a soft toothbrush at least twice a day.
Change toothbrushes whenever the bristles begin to wear out.
Use a fluoride toothpaste.
Use floss at least once a day to clean between the teeth.
Use special tips or devices to clean between the teeth or around bridges as suggested by a dentist or hygienist.
Keep removable denture appliances just as clean as the teeth.
Clean around orthodontic appliances or retainers.
Stay on a common-sense diet to keep oral tissues healthy. A diet high in sugars and starches has been shown to support higher levels of bacterial growth.
Have teeth cleaned and examined every six months unless instructed otherwise by a healthcare professional.
What are the long-term effects of the disease?
If untreated, gingivitis and periodontitis can lead to the loss of the teeth. With preventive care, there is no reason that the teeth should not last a lifetime. This disease process is almost always preventable or controllable if simple oral hygiene and regular dental checkups are followed.
What are the risks to others?
The infection of advanced periodontal disease can spread to other parts of the body, including the heart and other organs. This can happen without warning and can be avoided by simple prevention or early treatment.