Detrimental effects of gum disease on the body

Severe infection of the gums is known by a number of different names. Gum disease and periodontitis are both severe forms of gum infection. If you notice any irritation in your gums, you should see your dentist straight away. Symptoms to look out for include:

  • Pain in the teeth and gums
  • Headaches 
  • Red or inflamed gums
  • Bad breath
  • Bleeding gums
  • Deep crevices between teeth (loss of gum tissue)
  • Teeth loss

These symptoms will all develop over time so if you are experiencing any of these symptoms it is crucial that you book in to see Dr Geoff Ross at your earliest convenience. If we catch gum disease in the early signs of development (while it’s still considered gingivitis) we will be able to help you prevent tooth loss and further damage. In addition to your twice-annual visit, a quick visit to our Melbourne clinic when you notice unusual symptoms can end up saving you significant amounts of money, time and pain.

Causes of gum disease

While genetic susceptibility can be a cause of periodontitis, there are a number of other issues which also contribute to the occurrence of gum disease.

  • Smoking 
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Poor dental hygiene
  • An existing disease which can inhibit the body’s own resistance to infection (diabetes, down syndrome)

A quality dental hygiene regime is crucial to healthy teeth and gums. If teeth are neglected by not brushing or flossing, plaque calcifies and forms tartar. This hard calculus can severely damage the teeth if it’s left on the surface and infect the gums, that’s why it’s important to see Dr Geoff Ross twice a year so that he can remove tartar which is near impossible to remove with a simple toothbrush.

Effects of gum disease on the rest of the body

As if periodontitis wasn’t bad enough by itself, it has also been linked as a cause to a number of other diseases and illnesses.

Premature and underweight babies

For decades women have been going out of their way to ensure they have a healthy birth, by avoiding raw seafood, salami and even soft cheese! What these women don’t know is that new research has shown that caring for your baby can also start with caring for your own teeth. A recent study in India has shown that gum disease may be a leading cause of birthing premature or underweight babies. In the study, over 13 out of every 30 women were said to have advanced periodontitis. These women were also found to deliver babies that were underweight or premature 64% of the time compared to the healthy women who delivered babies with normal weights.

Increased risk of heart disease

Remember your B.F.M.D

While the effects of periodontitis are complex, the prevention is very simple and you’ve heard it all before! All you have to remember is B.F.M.D – brush your teeth twice a day, floss your teeth before bed, mouthwash and see your dentist at Dr Geoff Ross twice a year.

  • B: Brush twice!
  • F: Floss
  • M: Mouthwash
  • D: Dentist!

Dr Geoff Ross has over 30 years of experience caring for teeth and has been at his Melbourne dental practice for 24 years. He and his staff commit themselves to a caring and dedicated dental philosophy and aim to make their patients comfortable at all aspects of treatment.

To find out more about our dental clinic, our staff, our treatments, or to make an appointment, please call our friendly receptionist today on 9890 7777, or email us. We will endeavour to respond to your email as soon as possible.

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