National Gum Care Month

September is National Gum Care Month. Although most people intuitively understand the importance of taking care of their teeth, few consider the equally critical nature of gum care. Fortunately, National Gum Care Month reminds us to take care of our teeth and gums, which affects the rest of our health.  

The Gums Are Part of the Body’s Immune System

Gum health is crucial to overall health because the mouth is part of the immune system. In fact, the primary function of the immune system of the mouth is to protect the teeth, jaws, gingivae, and oral mucosa against infection. These host defenses vary in the different oral microenvironments or domains represented by the oral mucosa, saliva, and gingival crevice.

Gum disease can be reversed

Gum disease is a serious condition called periodontal disease. It can cause your gums to pull away from the tooth, which can lead to tooth loss and make it difficult for you to eat. Gum disease can also increase your risk for other serious health problems like heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis.

How to recognize gum disease

If you have any of the following symptoms, see your dentist right away:

Flossing is important for gum health

  1. Your teeth or gums feel loose or wobbly when touched
  2. There is a bad taste in your mouth
  3. You’re struggling to chew food

Flossing helps prevent gum disease and cavities, reduces inflammation and tooth sensitivity, and can reverse gum disease. In fact, flossing is the single most effective way to remove plaque from between teeth, which can lead to gum disease and tooth decay. If you fail to regularly floss, bacteria in plaque seat away at the enamel coating of your teeth and cause cavities. Unfortunately, most people only floss once a week or less—a habit which puts them at high risk for developing gum disease and/or losing teeth prematurely.

Flossing & Gum Care

You may be wondering how flossing can prevent cavities. Flossing cleans around the edges of your teeth. It also reaches along the gum line, where bacteria tend to collect. Left unaddressed, bacteria can lead to tooth decay. Brushing alone doesn’t reach these areas. So, it’s important to use dental floss every day! Flossing also plays a key role in preventing gum disease by removing plaque and food particles that get stuck between teeth for long periods of time (more than 24 hours). This helps prevent plaque from building up on teeth over time—which in turn leads to more serious issues such as gingivitis or periodontal diseases like chronic periodontitis or necrotizing ulcerative gingivitis (NUG).

About Dr. Fred Wong of Blue Ocean Dentistry in Glendora

Remember, you can do a lot for your dental and oral health by simply taking care of your teeth. Start by brushing and flossing regularly. Then, see a dentist if you need any other treatments. If you’re not sure how to take care of your mouth or want more information on gum diseases, contact us today!

Dr. Fred Wong and the staff at Blue Ocean Dentistry use the latest available dental treatments, equipment, and materials – all of which make a marked difference in our patients’ experiences. We are committed to helping our patients achieve optimal dental health. We creatively combine dental science and artistry — which can literally redesign your smile. Since even a subtle change in your smile will help you to project self-confidence and high self-esteem, we love helping you feel good about yourself. We deliver the finest dental care at the most reasonable cost and accept most dental insurance plans as well as CareCredit. For more about the dental treatment plans we offer or to schedule an appointment, call today (626) 852-6999.