Gum problems are by far one of the most commonly faced dental conditions. In one way or the other we all have experienced gum problems, be it bleeding on tooth brushing or chronic periodontitis. Gum diseases are also fairly common in young children and the elderly. Smoking is a external factor that causes several periodontal problems. Here are few ways to keep your gums healthy and problem free.
Foods for gum health
Diet is an essential factor in maintaining healthy gums. A balanced diet is recommended to avoid gum-related diseases and supplementation of vitamins and minerals can also be useful. Vitamin C, vitamin D, omega-3 and calcium-containing foods are especially beneficial to keep your gums healthy.
Drink plenty of water
It is also recommended to drink lots of water and rinsing the mouth frequently. Sufficient water, and not sugar-laden beverages, after eating a meal or even a snack ensures that any residual food is washed away.
Keep the stress down
Gum-related diseases such as aggressive periodontis are often related to rising stress levels. Patients under stressful conditions often neglect their periodontal health and the stress hormones tend to promote rapid gum tissue damage. Stress management can incorporate various methods like meditation and exercising.
Frequent dental checks
Visit a dentist regularly – at least twice a year even if there are no dental symptoms. Getting a routine dental check is always recommended so as to diagnose any unnoticed gum problems at an early stage. Professional dental cleaning such as scaling and root planing is to be carried out at an interval of every 6 months.
Proper daily dental hygiene
Good dental hygiene is not only about tooth care. It also keeps the gums healthy. The tooth brushing technique suitable for your dental needs is recommended by the dentist at the end of a dental session. Follow the techniques correctly to ensure complete cleaning of teeth and associated gum health.
Right brushing technique
In general the recommended method of brushing is placing the tooth brush at an angle of 45 degree to the tooth and moving it in gentle vibratory strokes. The sulcus of the gums should be thoroughly cleaned. All teeth surfaces should be covered while brushing. The brushing should ideally be done for 3 minutes twice daily.
Floss and Rinse
Other dental hygiene products such as dental floss, mouthwashes and interdental brushes should also be used if necessary. Chlorhexidine mouthwash is often beneficial in treating gum related disease. The usage of tooth picks is to be avoided as it tends to damage the interdental gums.
Check your health
Gum problems can often be indicators of systemic diseases such as high blood pressure or diabetes mellitus. In cases of systemic disease the gum destruction is very rapid as compared to normal healthy individuals. Therefore if any underlying systemic disease is present, proper oral hygiene should be maintained strictly to avoid further complications like gum disease.
Hormones affect gum health
Precautions should also be taken in adolescents and pregnant women as the hormones tend to accentuate gum diseases. Therefore good dental hygiene at these times in life is essential.
Avoid cigarette smoking
Cigarette smoking leads to rapid destruction of periodontal tissues apart from the host of other detrimental health effects. Therefore it is recommended to quit smoking or any other form of tobacco consumption to maintain healthy gums.