Healthy gums are crucial for the overall health of your mouth and teeth. However, they are often an overlooked part of people’s general dental hygiene routine.
If your gums are neglected, there can be a serious impact on your physical health. Healthy gums anchor your teeth in place and form a tight seal against bacteria; if they’re not properly cared for you will experience irreversible damage to the gums, which can then result in further damage to your teeth and the rest of your mouth.
For a healthy smile, it is essential that you ensure your gums are healthy and well cared for alongside your teeth, tongue, and cheeks. Discover how to maintain healthy gums, signs that there may be something wrong with your gums, and what to do if you are experiencing a dental emergency caused by unhealthy gums.
What are your gums for?
Healthy gums are designed to protect your teeth and prevent diseases from developing in your mouth. Made of soft skin and tissue, your gums cover the bones of your mouth and teeth; this acts as a protective barrier that holds your teeth in place and protects your mouth from bad bacterias that cause severe damage to your teeth, bones and overall dental health.
Without proper care, bacteria, food and drink particles can build up on and around your gums, resulting in deterioration and gum disease.
Problems caused by unhealthy gums:
Also known as periodontal disease, this infection can be both mild and severe. Common symptoms include gingivitis, where you will experience redness, bleeding and swelling in the gums, or more serious signs such as decay to your teeth and bones.
Severe cases of gum disease can lead to tooth loss and the spread of infection throughout the body, putting you at a higher risk of heart problems, diabetes, respiratory diseases and dementia in the future.
Maintaining healthy gums is crucial in order to avoid gum disease. With proper oral hygiene and routine check ups from your general dentistry practice, this infection can be avoided, or treated during early stages before it progresses.
Receding gums occurs when the gum line wears away, making your teeth appear to be longer than average. This can be caused by brushing and flossing too hard, or in contrast, by poor dental hygiene. Unfortunately, healthy gums cannot grow back, which is why it is essential that you care for teeth and gums before issues arise. If you are having concerns about receding gums and how to prevent this from happening, speak to your dentist during a routine check up.
Loose Teeth and Tooth Loss:
Gum disease and receding gums can result in your teeth becoming loose, or falling out completely. As healthy gums are designed to keep your teeth secure in the mouth, it is not uncommon for infected or damaged gums to become weakened and therefore unable to safely hold your teeth in place.
It is considered a dental emergency if you lose a permanent tooth, or if a permanent tooth has become “wobbly” or loose. If you are experiencing any signs or symptoms of loose teeth it is imperative that you book an emergency dentist appointment; find your nearest The 247 Dentist and book an emergency appointment today.
How to keep your gums healthy
The good news is that it’s very simple to maintain healthy gums and avoid a dental emergency!
Follow these steps to ensure healthy gums:
- Brush and floss your teeth twice a day. However, please be sure to not be too vigorous as this may damage the gum line.
- Replace tooth brushes every 3 months. Old toothbrushes harbor bacteria and can result in damage to the teeth and gums.
- Avoid smoking – smoking is one of the main causes for receding gums. We highly recommend quitting smoking, or not picking up the habit entirely to ensure healthy gums are maintained.
- Maintain a healthy diet! Over indulging in acidic or sugary food and drinks can result in plaque build-up, as well as decay and damage to your teeth and gums.
- Never skip general check ups – visiting your dentist for a bi-annual check up will maintain healthy gums and teeth, and allow medical experts to identify and treat problems before they intensify.