How Did I Get Gum Disease12 Nov, 2015
How Did I Get Gum Disease
Gum disease afflicts up to 80% of Americans according to the Mayo Clinic's website. Imagine eight out of ten of the people you personally know being affected by it. This is a problem that can lead to tooth loss. Some believe that gum disease also leads to more serious health conditions as it creates a pathway for bacteria to enter the body.
Know anyone who has returned from the dentist's office after being told that he needed a root scaling and planing or needed to see a periodontist because he had gum disease? This scenario plays itself out in dentists' offices frequently. So, what is going on?
Why does someone suddenly get gum disease? The answer is that one probably didn't 'suddenly' get it. Chances are it's been working its evil quietly in that person's life for a really long time. This person has been getting 'long in the tooth' for many years now. This is gum recession and it goes hand-in-hand with gum disease.
But why weren't you told about it before?
Now that I have been paying attention to the health of people's gums when they speak, I can see red puffy gums in even young twenty-something-year-old people. I have read from a dentist who states that perhaps somewhere between 75% and 95% of people have gum disease. Why?
Even for people who take scrupulously good care of their teeth by brushing and flossing daily, many will still develop gum disease. Why is this happening?
Consider the nature of eating. Our teeth are designed to mash and crush food during the process of mastication (eating). All that force being applied to mash our food into digestible, tiny pieces is likely to squeeze many food particles against our teeth and gums. A thin sticky substance called plaque may begin to form at that point. Plaque provides a nifty anaerobic environment for bacteria that cause gum disease to live, grow and reproduce in.
This plaque can harden into a substance called tartar. Tartar provides an even better environment for bacteria to thrive in. Brushing and flossing are not always enough to prevent plaque or tartar from forming. Removing those substances could be even more difficult. Many dental professionals say that tartar can only be removed via a professional cleaning. This may very well be part of the reason that the Mayo Clinic's website says up to 80% of Americans have this disease.
When I found out that I needed a root scaling and planing I was a bit unhappy. I knew that this condition didn't develop overnight. I was disappointed that I was never taught prevention. I've found that patient education on prevention has been a bit lacking at least among the dentists that I have visited.
I declined the root scaling and planing that was offered to me. Instead, I decided to research what was happening. I discovered a combination of tools that helped me to stop the gum disease I was suffering from. I also built a website explaining exactly what I did to get rid of gum disease and how I prevent it from coming back. That site is called Gingivitis Killer. After returning to the dentist's office, I was told that I no longer needed that root scaling and planing. I'm delighted at the results I have obtained.
I may not be able to get the gum tissue that I lost to return. But I can take steps to prevent gum disease from coming back and work to preserve the gum tissue that I have left. If you have or think you might have gum disease, you should visit a dentist for diagnosis and treatment.