Gum Disease Awareness Month
While many of our patients are focused on love and celebrating Valentine’s Day, at Northridge Dental Group, we are focused on Gum Disease Awareness Month. February is recognized as Gum Disease Awareness Month in an effort to make the public aware of the prevalence of the disease and the lasting effects that it can cause if left untreated. Also commonly known as periodontal disease, gum disease affects more than half of American adults and often remains undetected when regular dental care is not received.
What is Periodontal Disease?
Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection of the gum tissue that mainly affects the gums but can also spread to the jawbone and lead to tooth loss. One of the biggest problems with periodontal disease is that it doesn’t typically have the same warning signs as other dental health issues, such as decay. This is one of the reasons we are so passionate about routine dental care. During your oral hygiene examination, we check for periodontal disease and can catch any early issues and start treatment immediately. If you experience any of the following symptoms, you may be experiencing periodontal disease:
- Bad breath
- Swollen and red gums
- Bleeding gums
- Discomfort when chewing
- Tooth sensitivity
- Receding gums
- Changes to your bite
What Causes Periodontal Disease?
One of the leading causes of periodontal disease is a lack of an oral hygiene routine. When you do not brush and floss your teeth properly, you increase your chances of developing plaque. Patients should brush their teeth for two minutes twice a day and floss once a day. While poor oral hygiene is a leading cause of gum disease, it is not the only cause. Other factors include:
- Hormonal changes, such as during pregnancy and menopause
Illness and medications
- Smoking and using tobacco in general
- Family history of gum disease
If you are in Northridge, CA or the surrounding area and concerned about the state of your gums, or you need a routine dental examination, please contact our office to schedule an appointment.