Gum disease can happen to anyone, at any age. Periodontitis can cause other health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and many respiratory problems. The bacteria flowing from the gums passes through blood vessels and circulates through the body, causing blood vessel inflammation and damage. The inflammation causes an immune response that flows through the body, including the heart and brain, which means that tiny blood clots, a heart attack, or stroke might occur. Oral bacteria can be found within atherosclerotic blood vessels, a long way from the mouth. Treatment with antibiotics hasn’t proven effective to reduce the chance of cardiovascular risk. General dentistry services should be used twice a year as a preventive measure against gum disease.
Plaque and Gum Disease
Gingivitis is a mild form of periodontal disease. If teeth aren’t brushed correctly, or long enough to do a thorough job, plaque is left behind. Gums can get swollen and bleed when brushed. Bacteria-filled plaque is a film on your teeth that will harden into tartar. A general practice dentistry can scale the teeth to remove tartar. A general dentist can provide professional treatments and explain the methods for good oral care.
If gingivitis is left untreated, it can advance to periodontitis. The disease spreads below the gum line and affects the teeth. The bone in the jaw deteriorates, loosening the teeth. Pockets deepen around the teeth, harboring germs from plaque, and more tissue and bone are destroyed until the teeth eventually loosen and fall out. With periodontitis, the patient will have bad breath from the bacteria and infection in the deep pockets that usually contain pus. If the disease hasn’t progressed too far, planing the root is done to eliminate rough areas that can harbor bacteria. A general sedation dentistry can administer inhalation or intravenous sedation, or drugs such as diazepam, to calm people who have a hard time with dental procedures.
Smoking and Gum Disease
The connection between cardiovascular and gum disease may not be cut and dry, but smoking is another risk factor to be avoided. Smoking weakens your immune system. If gum disease is present, treatments may not work if you smoke cigarettes or a pipe or chew tobacco. Smoking can prevent the gums from healing, make your mouth more susceptible to infections, and cause bad breath.
Hormones and Gum Disease
Women in particular have mood swings from surges of hormones. When estrogen and progesterone are high, more blood flows to the gums. They can become sensitive and irritated. Gums can swell and bleed. If left untreated, bone loss may occur around the teeth, and eventual tooth loss. Puberty, menses, use of birth control pills, pregnancy, and menopause are all such things in the life of a female.
Prescription Drugs and Gum Disease
Certain prescription drugs can cause your mouth to be excessively dry. This condition supports the growth of bacteria and plaque on your teeth. Certain medications can cause gingival overgrowth, which increases the chance for periodontal disease. Specific meds that can cause gum swelling and overgrowth include some seizure medications, including phenytoin, cyclosporine (which is used to prevent transplant rejection), and channel blocker blood pressure medications like nifedipine, verapamil, diltiazem, and amlodipine. General dentistry services in Houston, TX, work with patients to determine the best intervals for regular checkups and cleanings, and they are also a general sedation dentistry.