Can You Reverse Gingivitis and Periodontal Disease
To answer that, let’s first define gingivitis. Gingivitis is an inflammation that takes place in the gum, otherwise known as periodontal tissue. Inflammation of this tissue results in redness and swelling, causing bleeding when brushing or flossing. Untreated gingivitis can lead to tooth loss because it causes bone loss around roots. The bacteria also produce toxins that can cause further damage to other teeth and surrounding areas. It’s infrequent for anyone with healthy teeth to get full-blown gum disease, but it still happens. It usually happens because of other underlying conditions like diabetes or pregnancy (both near peak hormonal levels). If you do get gum disease, though, it’s easily reversible! You can reverse gingivitis with proper brushing and flossing, which you should be doing anyway, even if you don’t have gum disease. What is periodontal disease?
Periodontal diseases are mostly the result of infections and inflammation of the gums and bones that surround and support the teeth. In its initial stage, called gingivitis, the gums can become swollen and red and may bleed. In its severe form, called periodontitis, the gums can disengage from the tooth, bone can be lost, and the teeth can loosen or fall out. Periodontal disease is mainly seen in adults. Periodontal disease and tooth damage are the two biggest threats to dental health.
A recent CDC report1 gives the following data related to the prevalence of periodontitis in the U.S.:
- 47.2% of adults aged 30 years and older have few forms of periodontal disease.
- Periodontal disease enhances with age; 70.1% of adults 65 years and older have periodontal disease.
This situation is common in men than women (56.4% vs 38.4%), those living below the federal paucity level (65.4%), those with less than a high school education (66.9%), and current smokers (64.2%)
Bacteria in the mouth infect tissue covering the tooth, causing inflammation, leading to periodontal disease. When bacteria stay on the teeth long enough, they create a film called plaque, which with the passage of time, hardens to tartar, also called calculus. Tartar buildup can spread below the gum line, which makes the teeth more difficult to clean. Then, only a dental health professional can clear the tartar and stop the periodontal disease process.
The following are some signs of periodontal disease:
- Bad breath or bad taste that won’t go away
- Red or swollen gums
- Tender or bleeding gums
- Painful chewing
- Loose teeth
- Sensitive teeth
- Gums that disengaged from your teeth
- Any change in the method your teeth fit together when you bite
- Any alteration in the fit of partial dentures
Certain factors enhance the risk for periodontal disease:
- Poor oral hygiene
- Crooked teeth
- Underlying immune-deficiencies—e.g., AIDS
- Fillings that have become defective
- Taking medications that cause dry mouth
- Bridges that no longer fit in a better way
- Female hormonal changes, such as with pregnancy or the use of oral contraceptives
What Causes Gingivitis?
Gingivitis is caused mainly by a lack of proper oral hygiene. If you don’t brush and floss, it is straightforward for plaque to build upon the teeth, especially around the gum line. As we know from my previous article, plaque will bond with bacteria and tartar, hardening into a substance known as calculus (tartar buildup). Calculus deposits next to gums irritate them causing inflammation and bleeding, which is what we call gingivitis. Other reasons someone may suffer from gingivitis include; poor diet, smoking, diabetes, pregnancy, dry mouth, illness such as colds or flu, breathing through your mouth while sleeping, acid reflux disorder (burn), allergies, etc. hormone changes, leukaemia, and many others.
What’s the Big Deal About Reversing Gingivitis?
Well, by simply brushing your teeth, you can prevent plaque from building up on your teeth! It will help reduce the amount of tartar buildup on your teeth, which lowers your risk of getting gum disease. It also helps with bad breath if you happen to have it, which is a symptom of gingivitis. By keeping your mouth clean, you also reduce how attractive bacteria can be to other sick people. In some cases, if they are close enough, there is a chance that they could get saliva or blood particles on them from their hands and then into an open wound of yours (happens most often when you’re young and active). If that happens, there is a chance they could become sick as well.
What are the Symptoms of Gingivitis?
There are several symptoms of gingivitis, but if you see any of them, it’s essential to visit your dentist for an evaluation. Gingivitis usually has no significant symptoms at first; it only becomes evident when gums begin receding (or pulling away from teeth), which is done by your friendly dentist. It causes pockets between teeth where plaque can easily hide, and tartar deposits start developing (that’s how they begin to form calculus). When gums pull back like this, it exposes roots of teeth which leads to tooth loss with time. Remember, though, that this is reversible! Gingivitis can be reversed through proper oral hygiene and professional cleanings, which help remove tartar from roots, restoring gum tissues.
Symptoms of Gingivitis Usually Include:
-Breath that smells like something died (you should brush twice a day and floss daily) -Gums appearing redder than average with visible blood vessels -Enlarged lymph nodes (swollen areas under jaw or armpits – both familiar places for lymphatic glands to be) -Swollen gums near the base of teeth (not caused by brushing or flossing well)
Gingivitis is relatively common (about 40% of the population over age 30). That means most people will suffer from gingivitis at some point in their lives.
Gum disease may progress painlessly, generating few obvious signs, even in the late stages of the disease. Although the signs of periodontal disease often are subtle, the condition is not entirely without warning signs. Specific symptoms may point to some form of the disease. The symptoms of gum recession include:
- Gums that bleed during and after tooth brushing and flossing
- Red, swollen gums. Healthy gums should be pink and firm.
- Constant bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth
- Gum Recession
- Development of deep pockets between teeth and gums
- Loose or shifting teeth
- Alternates in the way teeth fit together upon biting down or in the fit of partial dentures
Even if you don’t notice any signs, you can still have some degree of gum disease. In some people, gum disease can affect only certain teeth, such as the molars. Only a dentist or a periodontist can confess and determine the progression of gum disease.
How Can I Prevent Gingivitis?
The best way to prevent developing gingivitis is by brushing and flossing daily. Even those with diabetes or heart disease should brush twice a day as those conditions have been known to cause complications that can lead to gum loss. You should also eat a healthy diet, avoid smoking, go for regular dental check-ups, and see your dentist as soon as any symptoms appear. If you do all this, you should be fine.
The most effective way to protect against gingivitis is by visiting your dentist for professional cleanings and oral hygiene in-between visits. Cleanings remove tartar and plaque buildup in hard to reach areas and help control inflammation. That’s where we come in; we’re here to provide quality care that will last a lifetime! You’ll leave wondering why it can’t always be that easy. Reversing gum disease is very important.
If you are too lazy to floss or brush twice a day, get one of those water pic thingies that are supposed to work well these days. I recommend sticking with floss only because the bristles on end tend to irritate gums more than anything else.
What Are the Risks of Gingivitis?
Even though gingivitis is reversible, if it goes untreated, then the results could be disastrous. If periodontal disease is left untreated, it can lead to tooth loss and bone loss. It is caused by inflammation which spreads throughout the body through your blood vessels and lymphatic system. Unfortunately, this process happens slowly over many years, so you may not notice any changes until it’s too late.
Gum disease starts with gingivitis and ends with advanced periodontal disease. If gum disease does not receive treatment, its symptoms will progress from mild to moderate to severe:
-Moderate – Periodontal ligament fibres holding teeth in place become destroyed
-Severe – Teeth eventually fall out because of attachment level loss.
Once your gums start bleeding, then you should immediately make an appointment with a specialist. It is because this could be a sign of other underlying conditions such as ulcerative colitis or IBS. Bleeding gums are a symptom of several diseases and conditions. If it’s caused by periodontal disease, then you must seek treatment to improve your situation.
Even if the cause isn’t the same, that doesn’t mean there aren’t any risks involved. People can still get sick from having bad breath, affecting their social standing and self-esteem and damaging their quality of life. In some cases, bad breath can even signal more serious health problems such as diabetes or kidney failure. So even if your breath doesn’t smell like roses, it’s always better to be safe than sorry!
Remedies to Reverse Gingivitis Disease
In the short term, here are a few things you can try:
-Eat cold food and drink cold liquids to reduce swelling around teeth (and therefore bleeding gums) -Use a saltwater rinse (2 tsp. of salt in 8 oz. water) to help disinfect your mouth and kill bacteria that may be causing bad breath -Clean your tongue to remove bacteria, freshen your breath, and make it easier for the gums to get healthy again (we’ll show you how further down!) If you’ve noticed some changes but aren’t sure what they mean, see a specialist as early diagnosis is better than late diagnosis. When you come in, we’ll ask about any symptoms or health problems and take an X-ray. We can reverse gum disease by different methods. Beautiful teeth can make your smile attractive.
Brushing and Flossing to Protect Gums
Brush your teeth twice a day for 2 minutes each time or some other variation of this routine. You can brush your teeth frequently, but the two-minute rule is good to stick with. Floss regularly- once in the morning and before bedtime is best, so your mouth gets that all night time cleaning effect. Use an antimicrobial toothpaste that has no fluoride in it. Flossing removes plaque buildup better than brushing alone, so don’t forget to floss every time! You reverse gum disease by flossing.
Eat cold food and drink cold liquids to reduce swelling around teeth (and therefore bleeding gums). Use a saltwater rinse (2 tsp. of salt in 8 oz. water) to help disinfect your mouth and kill bacteria that may be causing bad breath. Clean your tongue to remove bacteria.
Use a diet that is high in nutrients. To promote blood flow and saliva production, eat fibrous fruits and veggies like apples, carrots, and celery regularly. Reduce the amount of sugar you utilize by avoiding foods and beverages that contain a lot of it.
Drink Water Properly
Drink plenty of water! It will keep your mouth from becoming dry, which can lead to a lot of bacteria buildup. It would help if you were drinking around 10-12 glasses each day, but make sure it’s at room temperature because cold liquids can cause tooth pain by hurting their roots. Flossing removes plaque buildup better than brushing alone, so don’t forget to floss every time! Chew sugarless gum after meals or strenuous activities like strenuous exercise because this will help remove plaque from your teeth and gums, similar to brushing and flossing together.
Various home remedies can reverse gingivitis. You can use topical antibiotics to prevent the bacteria from growing on your gums. Using natural medicines can also help to prevent the onset of gum diseases. The use of topical antibiotics can reduce the risk of developing gingivitis. It’s essential to visit a dentist regularly. In addition, you should also take care of your teeth and maintain good dental hygiene.
6 Essential Oil For Healthy Gums and Teeth!
Let’s face it; essential oils are all the rage these days. Known for their better healing and therapeutic benefits, essential oils have been used for centuries dating back to 2000 BC. In recent years, the rise of important oils has taken health care to a completely new aspect, for uses like aromatherapy, ingestion and personal care. The following oils are the top essential oils for healthy, beautiful gums and teeth!
Clove is essential for oral health. Clinical research indicates that clove oil can give relief to tooth pain and bad breath and help reduce gum disease! Clove oil also has the natural capacity to restrict the development of bacteria and can help fight mouth and throat infections.
Thyme is associated with the mint family and therefore is often used in mouthwashes and elixirs to give flavour and freshness for oral health treatments. It contains natural chemicals that help defend against tooth decay, gingivitis and general oral infections.
Oregano is a strong antioxidant known to contain anti-inflammatory properties to help minimize bacterial and fungal infections. Oregano oil is also known to help boost the immune system and can be combined with coconut oil for oil pulling treatments!
Tea Tree is a natural treatment for bad breath and has ingredients that diminish plaque. This oil is a perfect component for a DIY toothpaste or mouthwash because of its ability to kill off bacteria, reduce tooth decay and relieve bleeding gums! *Please note that tea tree should NOT be used for internal use other than for a mouthwash or toothpaste – you must spit it out after use and wash with water.
Peppermint is known for its cooling and numbing elements, which can soothe tooth and muscle aches. Research has found that peppermint oil is potent for fighting oral pathogens and killing common bacteria that may lead to cavities and gum disease.
Peppermint is antibacterial, antifungal, and antiseptic, making it an effective cleanser for every oral health care need, such as relief for a sore throat! Cinnamon oil also has one of the most excellent antimicrobial properties that protect against bacteria accountable for tooth decay.