Importance of Gum Health for Young People

Let’s admit, people always compliment a shiny smile or ask about your secret for bright white teeth. But, nobody has ever asked how you keep your gums so healthy or pink. That just shows how publicized teeth care and how ignored and underestimated gum health is.

Importance of Gum Health for Young People
[image: pexels by cottonbro]

While you are young, gums will only get your attention when an issue, like bleeding or severe pain, arises and you go see a dentist or periodontist. While most of us never get any serious gum issues, let’s look at how they impact the overall health of our body and their diseases.

Impact of gums on overall health

Gums are an important health element, and here are a few reasons to take good care of them:

Gums keep the teeth in their place.

Gums serve as a seal around the teeth and protect the underlying tissues, which are really sensitive.

If bacteria are allowed to sit on gums for a long time, they start making small pockets that provide space for the plaque to hide. That is why it is recommended that you regularly brush your teeth.

In case you develop such a condition and happen to be in Sydney, periodontists at North Shore Periodontics can take good care of it.

Gum health impacts heart health

Studies have proved gums to be an overall health predictor of the heart. Gum diseases are directly linked to cardiovascular problems like heart diseases and stroke.

Though there has been a difference of opinion among health experts, most patients who suffer a heart attack or a stroke also tend to have gum diseases.

Healthy gums mean a healthy body!

Over the years, doctors have found that people with gum disease are at a higher risk of diabetes, respiratory diseases, pregnancy complications, and other health concerns.

Instead of a cause-and-effect relationship, Dr. Van Dyke (Professor at Harvard School of Dental Medicine) has found these problems to be associated with gum diseases.

As per his research, the “inflammation” of gums is supposed to be the link between most diseases and unhealthy gums.

What is gum disease?

Gum disease is also known as periodontal disease or periodontitis, and it is caused by unhealthy habits.

Not flossing or brushing your teeth results in the formation of plaque -- an invisible sticky layer of germs that produces toxins that damage the gums.

Plaque hurts you in the following ways:

Inflammation of gums and underneath layers

Causing teeth to become loose and fall out

Bleeding of gums

Severe pain in gums or toothache

Progression of Gum Disease

Gum disease progresses in stages, and its early stage is often ignored by most of us.

The earliest stage is known as gingivitis and can be identified via the signs of minor inflammation or bleeding. It doesn’t impact deep-lying tissues and can be treated easily.

If the plaque is not treated or removed, it turns into a hardened crust called tartar. This is the second stage known as periodontitis.

Unlike the first stage, this stage is more harmful as it damages the underlying bone and tissues that hold the teeth in place. Without treatment, periodontitis can ruin your gums and the tissues underneath that connect to your teeth.

Though periodontitis is not common in the younger age group, the risk is always there. Therefore, it should be taken seriously at the slightest of symptoms discussed above.

Treatment and Prevention

The treatment depends entirely on the condition and severity of your disease. For example, a later stage of periodontitis will require surgical treatment. But, if it’s not that serious, it can be removed with dental cleaning and techniques like scaling or root planing.

Scaling is essentially deep cleaning, where hardened plaque or tartar is scraped off gums and teeth, and rough edges are smoothened to allow gums to reattach to the teeth.

In case the periodontist recommends surgical treatment, you’ll undergo one of the following:

Pocket reduction surgery, guided tissue generation, or using your bone or tissue grafts for reconstruction.

Let's just skip their details because they might sound scary and complex. Although they are complicated, most people consider them completely safe methods to treat bad gums.

You can save yourself from surgeries by maintaining good oral hygiene. This is fairly simple and should be done from an early age.

Brush your teeth twice every day and floss before bedtime regularly. If you have implants or space between teeth, try to use interdental brushes.

Eat healthy foods as a healthy diet will keep your gums strong and help suppress inflammation.

Stay away from all kinds of smoking activities -- cigarettes, hookah, cigars, etc. They are all bad for your health and especially your gums.

Remember, gums are often ignored but they are the silent guardians of your teeth (and according to some doctors, your overall health). Keep them healthy, and should a problem arise, visit a dentist as soon as you can!

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