Posted on: 16 March 2016
If you ask most people how to prevent gum disease, they'll tell you to brush your teeth. They're not wrong. However, they're not really telling you the whole story, either. Especially if you've been prone to gum disease in the past, simply brushing your teeth won't be enough to keep gum disease at bay. Here are some additional strategies you should be implementing.
Cleaning your tongue.
If you brush your teeth but don't brush your tongue, you're leaving a lot of oral bacteria behind in your mouth. These bacteria quickly work their way back onto your gums, where they multiply and start causing symptoms of gum disease. You can give your tongue a quick brush with your toothbrush at the end of your brushing session. Or, you can use a tongue scraper to clean it. Either method will help reduce your chances of gum disease.
Flossing your teeth.
Most people know they should be flossing – but they just don't do it often enough! If you're not flossing every day, you're leaving yourself at risk for gum disease. Oral bacteria love hiding out between your teeth, and the only way to really remove them is by flossing. If you find flossing difficult, try purchasing an extra-thin, fray-free floss. This is easier to use than traditional, waxed, string-style floss. Keep floss in your purse and glove box so if you forget to floss before you leave the house, you can do it at work or in your car.
Minimizing sugary beverages -- especially between meals.
Sugary beverages don't just perpetuate tooth decay; they feed the oral bacteria that cause gum disease, too! Try replacing sodas, juices, and other sugary drinks with water or unsweetened tea. If you really must have sweetened beverages, eat them with meals, and then brush your teeth soon afterwards.
Rinsing with salt water.
It might not taste great, but salt water is excellent at reducing your risk of gum disease. The salt naturally kills oral bacteria that cause gum disease. Plus, salt water is a whole lot cheaper than the expensive oral rinses at the pharmacy. Just stir a little salt into a cup of warm water and swish it around in your mouth before spitting it into the sink. Do this at least once a day – twice a day is even better.
If you begin to show signs of gum disease, such as red and swollen gums, make sure you're closely following the tips above. If the symptoms don't subside within a week or so, see your dentist. For more information on gum disease prevention, visit a site like http://www.desmoines-dentalassociates.com.Share