Sore Or Bleeding Gums? It’s Time To Visit Your Local Burton Dentists
Ignoring potential symptoms of gum disease can lead to serious oral health issues
Few of us actually enjoy going to the dentists. However friendly and helpful they are, there is always the nagging suspicion that you might need to have treatment, and especially if you are a nervous dental patient, this is something that you probably hope to avoid. The reality though is that healthy teeth and gums are important for your quality of life and also, potentially, for your overall health too.
Whilst even a nervous dental patient will usually face their fears and contact the dentist when they have a very painful toothache which simply can’t be ignored any longer, more ‘minor’ issues, like gum problems can sometimes be ‘put off’ and thereby allowed to progress and become worse.
If you have your teeth regularly cleaned by the oral hygienist at Mike Allen’s Dental Practice, you might never experience these symptoms, but the reality is that a lot of patients choose not to do this and therefore put themselves at a higher risk of gum disease and related problems. So what are the potential signs that you might have a gum disease problem? There are quite a few common ones although it is important to remember that gum disease can be largely symptom free in its earlier stages and we would always recommend regular checks rather than waiting for any symptoms to appear.
Common gum disease symptoms might include:
- Sore gums
- Bleeding gums
- Wobbly/loose teeth
- Red and inflamed gums
- Bad breath/halitosis
- Receding gums
This isn’t a complete list of gum disease symptoms but these are some of the more common things that you might notice. If you do detect any of these, please contact our Burton clinic as soon as you can so that it can be treated as quickly as possible.
How is gum disease treated?
Presuming that the problem hasn’t yet reached the stage where an invasive treatment known as root scaling is needed, gum disease can usually be managed and treated by a combination of better home cleaning (more of that soon), combined with a scale and polish which the dental hygienist can provide.
This is a three stage process and requires no local anaesthetic in most cases. The first stage consists of the removal of excess tartar, which is a combination of hardened bacteria and minerals which builds up on the teeth and around the gum line. This is gently ‘scraped’ away by the hygienist. The next step is to use a special sonic dental tool that shatters most of the remaining tartar. Finally, a very high speed brush is used which removes the rest of the tartar and will also improve the feel and appearance of your teeth by removing some surface staining too.
Although patients will benefit from this even as a one off treatment; to gain the maximum benefit for your gums, this should be carried out regularly, usually at six monthly intervals. Where other health issues, such as diabetes might heighten your risk of gum disease, we may recommend that you have this done at more frequent intervals; usually every three months instead of six. For most people though, a six monthly appointment with the hygienist should be sufficient.
Can I improve gum health by myself?
Even the best cleaning regime will benefit from the treatment above but you can certainly do a lot to help keep them healthier by taking better care of them at home. The most basic way that you can do this is to brush your teeth regularly and correctly and especially in the spaces between your teeth (see our previous blog at https://www.mikeallendental.co.uk/blog/advice/inter-dental-cleaning/) for more information on how to do this).
One of the main ways that potentially harmful bacteria increases in our mouths is through a lack of saliva to flush it away. Habits that can lead to a dry mouth include both smoking and drinking to excess. By eliminating these dangerous habits, not only will your general health benefit (and your finances!), but your teeth and gums as well. Make sure too, to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and to help flush bacteria and food particles away as well.
A healthy mouth has many benefits, not only in providing a comfortable and efficient environment when eating, but a nice smile and fresh breath can help to maintain and develop friendships and relationships too.
Whether you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned in this blog or not; if you don’t currently see a dental hygienist, we strongly recommend considering it. If you would like to book an appointment to see one at Mike Allen’s Dental Practice, you can do so by arranging an appointment with our Burton team on 01283 845345.Google+