Gum Disease Information

Written by Christa Gatewood
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The progression of gum disease is a descending spiral. As gum disease gets worse, more disease causing factors occur. Eventually, if left untreated, the disease will lead to tooth loss.

Gum Disease Gets Exponentially Worse If Neglected

Gum disease is caused by the bacteria in plaque. If you are not practicing sufficient home care, plaque can stay on the tooth too long. When plaque remains on a tooth, it hardens into tartar. Bacteria from the plaque then hides underneath this tartar and stagnates. It is protected by the tartar from being brushed away when you brush your teeth.

If that isn't bad enough, the bacteria that is trapped beneath the tartar irritates the gums. This is called gingivitis. It is the most common form of gum disease. If the gingivitis is untreated, the gums will begin to pull away from the teeth. This will cause a gap in between the teeth and the gums. The descending spiral continues as bacteria can now get into these gaps and cause an infection. Eventually, this can lead to more serious gum diseases and tooth loss.

If plaque is not allowed to stay on the teeth long enough to develop into tartar, the spiral can be averted altogether. That is why it is essential that everyone brush their teeth at least twice a day. It is an even better idea to brush additionally between meals, though not directly after a meal. Brushing alone is not enough, however. No toothbrush can reach all the nooks and crannies of a mouth. Flossing is necessary for a true cleaning and should be part of everyone's evening routine.


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