SCOTTS VALLEY, SANTA CRUZ, CA
Gum disease affects about half of adults in the U.S., although it’s an entirely preventable disease. It’s estimated that about two out of every five adults have some form of gum disease, which begins as gingivitis. However, the best way to prevent gum disease is prevention. Otherwise, ignoring gum disease could lead to devastating oral health effects, including tooth loss. So today on the blog, our Scotts Valley family dentists share four best practices to prevent gingivitis so that you can have healthy teeth and gums throughout life!
Practice good oral hygiene
Good oral hygiene is the foundation of healthy teeth and gums. Brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily removes plaque buildup, which is responsible for tooth decay and gum disease. If not removed daily, plaque buildup harbors bacteria, which secrete acids that erode tooth enamel and infect the gums, causing them to bleed easily and become red and inflamed. Eventually, plaque hardens into tartar, which can only be removed by professional dental cleanings.
See the dentist twice a year
Dental cleanings help maintain good oral health by removing tartar. No matter how well you brush and floss, everyone develops some level of tartar. We recommend receiving dental cleanings from our Scotts Valley dentist’s office once every six months, although some people with excessive buildup or those managing gum disease may require additional cleanings throughout the year. This guidance is in accordance with the American Dental Association. Dental cleanings should be thought of as part of preventive treatments for your oral health. It’s just like changing the oil in your car. Even though your car runs fine and is free of mechanical defects, you still change the oil like clockwork. Likewise, dental cleanings help prevent oral health issues like gum disease and cavities that lead to damage and costly repairs.
Skip the tobacco
It’s no surprise that tobacco products in any form, even vaping, are not healthy for your body. But it’s also detrimental to your oral health. Tobacco causes bad breath, stains teeth, reduces blood flow, and increases the risk of gum disease. According to the CDC, tobacco users are twice as likely to develop gum disease. Therefore, we recommend that you avoid tobacco products of any kind if you want to prevent gingivitis and protect your overall health.
Sip water instead of sugary beverages
Most people don’t realize that what they drink has a significant bearing on their oral health. While you may prefer soda or another sweetened beverage with your meals, that habit may be destroying your teeth and gums. Sip on water instead of soda, sports drinks, juice, or other sugary beverages. If you’d like to enjoy wine or a cocktail, just chase it with some water to rinse out your mouth until you can brush your teeth. If you’re looking for ways to hydrate without resorting to sports drinks, add some Himalayan salt with a squirt of lemon juice to replenish electrolytes and hydrate your body after a workout or sweat session.
Family Dentists in Scotts Valley, Los Gatos, and Santa Cruz
Prevention is fundamental in protecting your health, as well as your teeth and gums. With diligent oral hygiene, routine dental visits, and smart lifestyle choices, you can protect your oral health for the long haul. If you’d like to learn more or schedule an appointment, please call Ebrahimian Integrative Dentistry at (831) 438-4411 or visit us online.