Waco Dentist: Important Facts About Gum Disease

You may recognize gingivitis and gum disease from their stints in mouthwash commercials, or from your dentist’s warnings to carefully brush and floss your teeth every day. However, unless you’ve specifically dealt with gum disease, you may not be aware of how serious a problem the condition can pose to your oral and overall health. Your Waco, TX dentist, Dr. Corbet Locke, explains that knowledge is a key component to successful dental care, especially when it comes to prevention. Today, we outline a few of the more important aspects of gum disease’s development and influence on your smile, along with how to spot the disease’s earliest stage and prevent its destructive progression.

What You Should Know

  • Have you ever noticed your gums bleeding when you brush your teeth? Contrary to popular belief, bleeding gums are not normal; red, swollen, and bleeding gums typically indicate gingivitis, and noticing them should prompt you to visit Dr. Locke as soon as possible.
  • Your gums grow irritated and inflamed from the presence of dangerous oral bacteria. Some of them release toxins that cause your gums to recede from your teeth, while others incite excessive inflammation that can destroy your gums when left unchecked.
  • Unlike tooth decay, which destroys your tooth’s structure, gum disease focuses on the foundation that supports your teeth (i.e., gum tissue and jawbone). In many cases, by the time treatment is sought, gum disease has already ravished enough of your smile’s foundation to cause the loss of one or more teeth. In fact, gum disease is the leading cause of permanent tooth loss in the United States.
  • Aside from making your gums look horrible, tainting your breath, and possibly costing you teeth, gum disease can also have a significant influence on your systemic health. The mechanisms behind gum disease in particular have been linked to increased risks of heart disease, respiratory disease, and diabetes, among many other illnesses.
  • Once gum disease develops, it’s incurable (but highly manageable). Your best option for preventing the disease is to brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day to control the bacteria that afflict your gums. Also, attend a routine dental checkup and cleaning at your Waco dentist’s office at least once every six months to increase your chances of early detection and successful intervention.

Learn More by Calling Your Waco Dentist Today

If your gums seem troubled, or if you’d like to learn how to control an existing case of gum disease, then schedule a consultation with Dr. Locke by calling our Waco dentist’s office at (254) 776-4888. Located in the 76712 area, we proudly welcome patients from Waco, Woodway, McGregor, Hewitt, and surrounding communities.