How To Prevent Gum Disease at Every Age

Woman,With,Gum,Inflammation,,CloseupGum disease prevention is something that should start in infancy and last throughout your life. By age 30, almost half of adults have at least the early signs of gum disease. By age 65, more than 70% have more serious periodontal disease.
February is National Gum Disease Awareness Month. To celebrate, this article will give parents and people of all ages tips on preventing gum disease.

Gum Disease Prevention Tips for Parents

Gum disease starts small and grows over time, so should gum disease prevention. Parents should begin watching for the signs of dental problems at an early age, like plaque buildup and red gums. Plaque is at the heart of gum disease and tooth decay, so it should be addressed right away.

Plaque is a sticky substance that builds on teeth as bacteria break down food, especially sweets. Brushing and flossing is the best way to remove it, along with regular dental cleanings.

It is up to parents to instill in their children the importance of brushing and flossing correctly and regularly. Plaque, when not removed, hardens and becomes tartar. This tarter growth can mean a lifetime of gum irritation.

Parents should also limit the amount of simple carbohydrates their kids eat. If they have sweets, have them brush their teeth right afterward to remove the plaque. Avoid too many crackers and bread, as these starchy foods can lead to tooth decay.

Add regular dental checkups to the prevention formula. Kids should see the dentist every six months starting before that first tooth comes in.

Gum Disease Tips for Adults & Seniors

Hopefully, by the time kids become adults, they’ve developed a strong oral hygiene routine that includes daily brushing and flossing, plus visits to the dentist twice a year. There are other things adults face that can increase their risk of gum disease, such as:

  • Stress
  • Smoking
  • Dry mouth
  • Changes in hormones, especially for women
  • Chronic diseases such as diabetes

As a person gets older, brushing may become more difficult if they have mobility impairments. Then, an antimicrobial mouth rinse may help prevent plaque buildup. Those with tooth loss should seek a restorative dentist to discuss their options; replacing lost teeth can not only help prevent gum disease but also bone loss.

Develop a Wellness Plan With Dr. Kussman

Dr. Tammy Kussman, DDS, can help you build a comprehensive dental wellness plan that tackles all your risks and restores your oral health. Call 615-346-3007 to make an appointment or fill out the online contact form. We look forward to seeing you!

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