white smile 2The word “dentistry” can be a little deceiving. Dent is a Latin word meaning “tooth,” but not all of dentistry is focused on the teeth alone. A significant portion is also focused on the gums. The same should be true of your homecare because unhealthy gums can have disastrous consequences. Your Waco dentist, Dr. Corbet Locke, discusses the damage that periodontal disease can do and what you can do to prevent it.

Periodontal Disease and the Mouth

Periodontal disease, or gum disease, seems to start off innocently enough. It typically begins as gingivitis (inflammation of the gums), which sounds like a rash on the gums. Unfortunately, the bacteria that cause gingivitis have a peculiar effect on the human body. They actually prevent the immune system from attacking them, allowing the disease to flourish and progress into periodontitis, a more damaging form of gum disease. Periodontitis attacks the tissues and ligaments at the base of teeth, and as the disease progresses, teeth become looser until they tend to shift. Eventually, teeth begin to fall out, resulting in disastrous consequences for the mouth.

Preventing Gum Disease

The first step in any preventive plan against gum disease involves homecare. A thorough and consistent homecare regimen can improve the health of the teeth and gums and keep them free of potentially damaging bacteria. A good homecare regimen requires brushing twice a day and flossing once a day. During brushing, the bristles of the toothbrush should be angled toward the gum line to remove bacteria from the base of teeth. Flossing should be gentle but thorough with the goal of removing bacteria from between teeth. Finally, any preventive plan against periodontal disease should include regular dental visits. Be sure to attend a dental checkup with your Waco dentist, Dr. Locke, every six months.

Treatment for Periodontal Disease in Waco

Do you have gum disease? Contact our 76172 dental office at 254-776-4888 to schedule an appointment or a consultation with your Waco dentist, Dr. Locke. We serve patients from Waco, Woodway, McGregor, Hewitt, and surrounding communities.