Gum disease is an unpleasant affliction, even though many people may not consider it a serious problem. Those who have allowed gum disease to run rampant with their smiles, however, know better. As the number one cause of adult tooth loss in America, gum disease affects nearly 80% of the adult population, and once it’s grabbed a hold of your gum tissues, it’s pretty much there to stay. Thankfully, gum disease is highly preventable, and highly controllable after it develops. With the right care, you don’t have to suffer tooth loss at the hands of the dental infection.
A Discreet Approach to Tooth Loss
Tooth decay, which causes cavities (small holes) to form in your tooth’s structure, is perhaps more widespread than gum disease, so why isn’t decay the top cause for tooth loss? The answer lies in the different natures of the diseases. While tooth decay directly attacks your teeth, gum disease encroaches upon the foundations that support and hold your teeth in place, namely gum tissue and your jawbone. If you aren’t diligent or if you slack when it comes to your regular dental checkups and cleanings, then you may not realize gum disease is present. By the time many patients seek treatment for gum disease, it has already largely destroyed much of their oral tissues, making it difficult for their mouths to retain all of their natural teeth.
Act First, Before Bacteria Can
Although different, tooth decay and gum disease do share a few things in common. For instance, both begin as bacterial infections that result from excessive plaque formation (which is itself a result of poor oral hygiene). Be sure to brush and floss your teeth at least twice every day, visiting your Austin dentist every six months for a checkup and cleaning can help prevent harmful bacteria from attacking your teeth and gums. If Dr. Van Wicklen discovers that your gums are at risk, then early treatment can help stave off the destruction that leads to tooth loss and preserve your smile without the need for extensive treatment.
About Your Austin Dentist:
Since 1985, Dr. Steven Van Wicklen has been providing expert general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry services to patients and families in Austin, Round Rock, Pflugerville, Bastrop, Bee Cave, Cedar Park, and all surrounding communities. To schedule your cosmetic dental consultation, call our office today at (512) 448-3131.