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Gum disease begins with the growth of bacteria in your mouth and it may end with loss of teeth. Thus, the severity of gum disease or periodontitis should not be underestimated. Tooth loss mainly happens due to the destruction of the tissue which surrounds the teeth.
Types of gum disease:
- Gingivitis: Gingivitis is basically the first stage of periodontitis. It causes bleeding from the gums and also causes immense pain in the teeth.
- Periodontitis: In periodontitis, the gum and teeth separate. A gap is formed between the two which may cause debris to accumulate in the space and cause other infections.
Causes of gum disease:
The exact cause of gum disease is not known but here are some of the possible causes:
- Hormonal changes: Hormonal changes during pregnancy, menopause and puberty are just some times the gums become more sensitive and gingivitis develops.
- Illnesses: Cancer, HIV, diabetes and other illnesses may cause problems with the immune system and damage the gums. This is an example of how gingivitis is caused as a complication of other disorders.
- Bad habits: Smoking causes gum disease as you may already know.
- Poor oral hygiene: Not brushing and flossing may lead to accumulation of food materials in the mouth causing gum diseases.
- Family history: Family history is also a major contributing factor to what may cause gum disease.
The treatment prescribed for gum disease depends how deep it is set and whether it is a case of gingivitis or periodontitis. Here are the possible treatments for gum disease:
- Professional dental cleaning: This is the most common treatment used in the early stages of gum disease. In fact, dental cleanings are usually used to prevent it and are used as soon as tartar and plaque buildup.
- Scaling and root planing: This is also a type of cleaning except that it needs to be done under a local anesthetic as there is a certain degree of pain involved in the procedure.
- Surgery: Surgery is also sometimes used to remove the infected pockets and put the gums back in their original place.
Dental care is a part of human health which is often overlooked by a majority of the population. Teeth form a very important part of our body and not just for cosmetic reasons but for utilitarian reasons as well. It is important to maintain the health of our teeth at all times.
What is Tooth Enamel?
Tooth enamel is the tough outer covering of any teeth that is visible outside the gums. This is the layer which protects the nerve endings and is one of the strongest materials in the human body. This part of your teeth is especially susceptible to stress. While we eat, drink, chew, this is the layer that most exposed to damage and if eroded can cause permanent damage as well. Tooth enamel decay is mostly caused by a diet high in starches and sugar, excessive consumption of soft drinks, and excessive alcohol consumption, to name a few.
How can you keep your tooth enamel healthy and strong?
You can restore the health of your tooth enamel by implementing the following habits:
- Changing to a healthy diet - Changing to a low sugar diet will definitely improve the health of your enamel besides providing fewer chemicals, which are mainly responsible for tooth enamel decay.
- Using straws while consuming highly acidic drinks such a fruit juices - Straws are a great way to have highly acidic drinks like fruit juices without bothering your teeth and thus keeping enamel protected.
- Keeping the body hydrated - It is also important to keep the body hydrated to allow the formation of saliva properly. People with dry mouth often suffer from issues related to the tooth enamel and the best way to prevent it from happening this is by drinking plenty of water.
- Using a fluoride toothpaste and mouthwash - Using mouthwashes and toothpaste containing fluoride helps in building up tooth enamel as well helps in keeping teeth healthy.
Related Tip: The Chemistry between Calcium and Teeth
Smoking is a phenomenon where the smoke emanated from a burning substance, usually tobacco, is inhaled. Smoking is a major cause for multiple diseases such as lung cancer, mouth cancer, blood pressure disorders etc.
Smoking tends to limit the capabilities of the immune system and this makes it easier for various diseases to affect the body. Smoking can lead to problems in the teeth where the gum tissues that attach the bone with the teeth are affected. This may cause the blood flow to the gums to be impaired and affect the functioning of the teeth.
The changes that the teeth undergo due to smoking are -
1. It may increase teeth sensitivity.
2. Smoking causes the teeth to be pulled away from the gums.
3. It can result in swollen and bleeding gums.
4. It may cause pain while chewing food.
5. Bone loss around the jawline occurs in smokers.
6. It can result in stained teeth and bad breath.
Disorders related to the teeth caused by smoking
There are various disorders of the teeth which are directly linked to smoking, they are -
- Mouth cancer - in this condition tumors are formed in the mouth
- It can cause plaque to accumulate in the teeth
- It may cause gum disease that can result in tooth loss
- It may interfere with healing period of any dental treatment
- It reduces the success rates of teeth implants
- Sweeteners present in the tobacco can also cause tooth decay
The effects of smoking on the tooth can be minimized by avoiding smoking altogether. Apart from that, following proper dental hygiene such regular brushing and flossing of the teeth will keep the teeth healthy. Avoiding smoking also reduces chances of lesion leukoplakia (white patches near teeth and gums).
Related Tip: 7 Dangerous Changes that Smoking Causes to Your SKIN