How to take care of your gums

Good oral hygiene isn’t all about how bright your smile is or how straight your teeth are. It’s also about taking steps to ensure your mouth, as a whole is as healthy as possible including your gums and tongue. Even the healthiest of mouths is susceptible to gum disease without proper care.

Gum disease begins when plaque, a sticky bacteria-filled film-like substance, builds up along and under the gum line causing gingivitis. Common symptoms of gingivitis include inflammation, tenderness, and redness, swelling, and bleeding. At this stage, the damage is still reversible since the bone and tissue aren’t impacted.

However, if left untreated, gingivitis can lead to advanced forms of gum disease known as periodontitis and advanced periodontitis. Signs of advanced gum disease include:

  • Consistent bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth
  • Separating or loose permanent teeth
  • Bleeding, swollen, red, or tender gums
  • Gums that have pulled away from your teeth

So how can you prevent gum disease? Here are a few tips.

  1. Floss and brush at least two times per day with fluoride toothpaste
  2. Get regular cleanings
  3. Don’t smoke
  4. Use a therapeutic mouthwash.

If it’s been longer than 6 months since you’ve been in to see us or if you are looking for a new dentist, give us a call today at 573-243-5200 to schedule an appointment. We are proud to offer preventative and restorative dentistry to patients of all ages.