Taking care of your gums is not just about having an attractive smile; it plays a critical role in maintaining your overall health. Most people are aware of the connection between oral health and problems like tooth decay. However, fewer people understand the relationship between gum health and systemic health issues.
At Highlands Ranch Periodontics and Dental Implant Specialists, we’re dedicated to educating our patients about the importance of gum health and its impact on their overall well-being. In this blog post, we’ll explore the connection between periodontal disease and general health.
What is Periodontal Disease?
Periodontal disease, commonly known as gum disease, is an infection that affects the tissues and bones that support the teeth. It is caused by harmful bacteria found in plaque, the sticky film that constantly forms on your teeth. If plaque is not removed through regular brushing and flossing, it builds up and hardens into tartar, which can only be removed by a dental professional. As tartar accumulates, it irritates and inflames the gums, leading to periodontal disease.
The Connection between Periodontal Disease and Overall Health
1. Cardiovascular Disease
Chronic inflammation resulting from periodontal disease has been linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (heart disease). Oral bacteria can enter the bloodstream and contribute to harmful plaque buildup in the arteries. This can lead to atherosclerosis (narrowing of the arteries), increasing the risk of heart attack and stroke.
People with diabetes are more susceptible to infections, including gum disease. Moreover, research has shown that periodontal disease can make it more difficult for people with diabetes to manage their blood sugar levels, leading to complications in their overall health and well-being.
3. Respiratory Infections
Bacteria from periodontal disease can be inhaled into the lungs, leading to respiratory infections such as pneumonia. This is particularly concerning for individuals with pre-existing respiratory conditions, like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
4. Pregnancy Complications
Pregnant women with periodontal disease may be at a higher risk of developing complications during pregnancy, including preterm birth and low birth weight. Maintaining good oral health is essential for a healthy pregnancy.
Preventing and Treating Periodontal Disease
Prevention is key when it comes to periodontal disease and its potential impact on your overall health. Here are some tips to help maintain good gum health:
- Maintain good oral hygiene. Brush your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
- Floss daily to remove plaque from between your teeth.
- Visit your dentist regularly for professional cleanings and checkups.
- Avoid tobacco products, which can increase your risk of gum disease.
If you suspect you may have periodontal disease, it’s crucial to seek treatment right away. At Highlands Ranch Periodontics and Dental Implant Specialists, our team is well-equipped to diagnose and provide effective treatments for gum disease.
If you are searching for a periodontist in Highlands Ranch, contact us today! Call (303) 683-1144 to book an appointment or complete the online booking form. Don’t let gum disease jeopardize your overall health – take the first step toward better gum and overall health today.
Frequently Asked Questions
Periodontal (gum) disease is an infection of the tissues surrounding and supporting your teeth. It occurs when bacteria in plaque form in between your gums and teeth, leading to inflammation, bleeding, and swelling. Without treatment, periodontal disease can cause severe damage to your gums, bones, and teeth.
The four stages of periodontal disease are gingivitis, early periodontitis, moderate to advanced periodontitis, and severe periodontitis. Each stage is characterized by unique symptoms that can range from mild inflammation in the gums (gingivitis) to the receding of gum tissue and bone loss (severe periodontitis).
Common signs of periodontal disease include red, swollen, and tender gums; persistent bad breath; receding gums; visible pus between your teeth and gums; and loose teeth. If you experience any of these symptoms, you should seek treatment from a dental professional as soon as possible.
The best way to prevent periodontal disease is by maintaining good oral hygiene habits. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily, avoid tobacco products, and visit your dentist regularly for professional cleanings and checkups. Doing these things can help keep your gums healthy and free of disease.
At Highlands Ranch Periodontics and Dental Implant Specialists, we understand the importance of good gum health and its connection to overall health. Dr. Mike Norouzinia is dedicated to providing high-quality treatments that promote better oral and systemic health. To book an appointment, call us today at (303) 683-1144 or complete the online booking form. Don’t wait – take the first step toward better gum and overall health today!