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Periodontitis, also generally called gum disease or periodontal disease, begins with bacterial growth in your mouth and may end — if not properly treated — with tooth loss due to the destruction of the tissue that surrounds your teeth. As the disease progresses, the pockets deepen and more gum tissue and bone are destroyed. Often, this destructive process has very mild symptoms. Eventually, teeth can become loose and may have to be removed.
There are many forms of periodontitis
The most common ones include the following.
- Aggressive periodontitis occurs in patients who are otherwise clinically healthy. Common features include rapid attachment loss and bone destruction and familial aggregation.
- Chronic periodontitis results in inflammation within the supporting tissues of the teeth, progressive attachment, and bone loss. This is the most frequently occurring form of periodontitis and is characterized by pocket formation and/or recession of the gingiva. It is prevalent in adults but can occur at any age. Progression of attachment loss usually occurs slowly, but periods of rapid progression can occur.
- Periodontitis as a manifestation of systemic diseases often begins at a young age. Systemic conditions such as heart disease, respiratory disease, and diabetes are associated with this form of periodontitis.
- Necrotizing periodontal disease is an infection characterized by necrosis of gingival tissues, periodontal ligament, and alveolar bone. These lesions are most commonly observed in individuals with systemic conditions such as HIV infection, malnutrition, and immunosuppression.
- Hormonal changes, such as those occurring during pregnancy, puberty, menopause, and monthly menstruation.
- Illnesses may affect the condition of your gums. This includes diseases such as cancer or HIV that interfere with the immune system.
- Bad habits such as smoking.
- Poor oral hygiene habits such as not brushing and flossing on a daily basis.
The signs and symptoms of periodontitis include:
- inflamed or swollen gums and recurrent swelling in the gums
- bright red, sometimes purple gums
- pain when the gums are touched
- receding gums, which make the teeth look longer
- extra spaces appearing between the teeth
- pus between the teeth and gums
- bleeding when brushing teeth or flossing
- a metallic taste in the mouth
- halitosis, or bad breath
- loose teeth
The effects of periodontitis can be stopped through regular checkups and treatment and continued good oral hygiene. This is also a part of treatment once an infection occurs.
It is important to:
- Brush the teeth with a suitable toothbrush and toothpaste at least twice a day, carefully cleaning the chewing surfaces and the sides of the teeth.
- Use floss or an interdental brush every day to clean between the teeth, in the spaces that the brush cannot reach. Dental floss can clean small gaps, but a dental brush is useful for a larger space.
- Take extra care when cleaning around uneven surfaces, for example, closely-packed teeth, crooked teeth, crowns, dentures, fillings, and so on.
- After brushing, use an antibacterial mouthwash to help prevent bacteria from growing and to reduce any inflammatory reaction in the mouth.
According to the American Dental Association (ADA), it is best to:
- brush the teeth for 2 minutes, twice a day with either a manual or electric toothbrush that has soft bristles
- use a fluoride toothpaste
- rinse the brush well after use and store upright
- replace the toothbrush every 3 to 4 months, more if the bristles are matted or frayed
- choose a brush with the ADA seal of acceptance
Brushes should not be shared, as bacteria can pass from person to person in this way.
Some research shows that cranberry may help thwart gum disease by preventing bacteria from sticking to your teeth. Take some unsweetened cranberry juice and drink it on a daily basis. Cranberry comprises phenolic acids and anthocyanins, which are known to have anti-microbial properties that help keep your teeth and gums off the harmful bacteria.
2. Vitamin C
There’s some evidence that vitamin C could play a role in protecting gum health.
3. Oil Pulling
A remedy long used in Ayurveda, oil pulling involves swishing a tablespoon of oil (such as coconut oil or sesame oil) around your mouth for about 15 minutes at a time.
4. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil possesses powerful anti-inflammatory properties that help soothe irritated and inflamed gums. All you need to do is add a few drops of tea tree oil to your toothpaste or buy toothpaste with tea tree oil as an ingredient in it.
5. Sea Salt
The minerals present in sea salt help reduce inflammation and also cure pain and infection. In the case of gum infection, you can simply dissolve a small quantity of sea salt in a cup of warm water. You can use this solution as a mouth rinse by swishing it in your mouth for about 30 seconds before spitting out.
6. Give Yourself A Gum Massage
You could also give yourself a good gum massage to get rid of gum pain. This will help in raising the flow of blood into your gum and ensures a quick recovery.
Take some raw honey on your fingertips and massage on your gums gently. Honey has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that help kill the bacteria causing bleeding gums. Make sure you apply honey on your gums regularly.
Turmeric has long been known to help heal infections; thanks to its therapeutic properties. Its curcumin compound is said to have anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties that help stop the gums from bleeding. All you need to do is mix some turmeric and mustard oil together and massage the mixture gently on your gums.
Some other quick remedies
- One cup of orange juice with a half teaspoon of natural sugar and a pinch of cumin will help keep bleeding gums at bay.
- Drink a glass of lemon water, which is also known to help stop the blood.
- Raw apples are said to be beneficial. Eating a raw apple for about half an hour after meals help to clean the teeth and heal the gums. You can eat pears too.
- Try eating raspberries two to three times a day on an empty stomach. Make sure you do not combine them with a dairy product.
We hope you found this information useful and we wish you stay away from them.
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