Gum disease is a fairly common condition, but people that do not have it may not understand what it really is. Gum disease is a leading reason for tooth loss in adults if left untreated, which is why it is so important to understand the causes and treatments for it.

Gum Disease Causes

Several factors contribute to potentially getting gum disease, the first of which is plaque. Plaque buildup is closely related to how well you care for your teeth, because it builds up on tooth surfaces that have not been properly brushed or flossed. When ignored, the plaque will sit on the tooth's surface and eventually spread to the gums where it will eventually contribute to causing gum disease. You can avoid plaque buildup by not eating many foods that have excessive sugar contents, which includes refined carbohydrates such as pasta, white bread, white flour, cookies, and snack foods that have been processed.

Other contributing factors include smoking and diabetes. All of these things inhibit blood flow going to your mouth, and make it more difficult for your gums to heal. Researchers have even discovered that stress can cause a body to become impaired by a bacterial infection in your gums. A lack of vitamin C can also impair healing and cause gum disease.

Gum Disease Treatments

Those that suffer from having gum disease are not out of luck. There are several treatments for this problem. A common treatment is known as root planing. It is a very effective way of managing a problem with gum disease, and is done when the gums have started to separate from your teeth. It is essentially a deep cleaning of your teeth, but especially in the area where the gums would attach themselves to your teeth. It allows the gums to start to heal, but a flap reduction procedure may be necessary to remove deep pockets.

Antibiotics can be used to treat gum disease as well, which will reduce the amount of bacteria located inside your mouth. Since bacteria is a direct reason why people get gum disease, it makes sense to get rid of bacterial with an antibiotic.

Even after you have treatment done for gum disease, you are not in the clear yet. You will still need to practice an excellent oral hygiene routine to keep your teeth and gums healthy. This includes regular flossing and brushing, as well as eating a healthy and balanced diet.

Think you may have gum disease? Contact a dentist to set up an appointment to have your gums looked at.