Understanding Periodontal Maintenance For The Tigard, OR Community

Periodontal Maintenance: Keeping Your Gums Healthy

At our Tigard dental office, TruDentistry of Tigard, we want to help our community understand the importance of periodontal maintenance, and how it can preserve your oral health as well as your over-all health.  Here, we will delve into the significance of maintaining healthy gums.  We will provide good insight on how effective periodontal care will have a positive impact on your overall health.

Understanding Periodontal Maintenance

Periodontal maintenance involves regular dental visits paired with at-home dental hygienic care focused on preventing and treating gum disease. Healthy gums are essential for supporting your teeth and maintaining overall oral health.

Why Periodontal Maintenance Matters

  1. Preventing Gum Disease:

Regular periodontal maintenance helps prevent gum disease, including gingivitis and periodontitis. These conditions can lead to tooth loss and have been linked to systemic health issues.  

  1. Preserving Tooth Structure:

Healthy gums provide the foundation for strong teeth. By maintaining optimal gum health, you can preserve the structure and stability of your teeth for years to come.

  1. Enhancing Oral Hygiene:

When we recommend a periodontal maintenance treatment plan, we set appointments to include professional cleanings to remove plaque and tartar buildup. These cleanings complement your daily oral hygiene routine, promoting healthier gums and fresher breath.

Frequently Asked Questions: Periodontal Maintenance in Tigard

Q: How often should I undergo periodontal maintenance?

A: Periodontal maintenance visits are typically recommended every three to four months for individuals with gum disease or a history of periodontal issues.

Q: What happens during a periodontal maintenance appointment?

A: A periodontal maintenance appointment includes a thorough examination of your gums, professional cleaning to remove plaque and tartar, and personalized oral hygiene instructions.

Q: Can periodontal maintenance help with bad breath?

A: Yes, regular periodontal maintenance can significantly improve bad breath by removing bacteria and plaque buildup that contribute to odors.

Q: Are there any home care tips for maintaining healthy gums between appointments?

A: Yes, maintaining good oral hygiene habits such as brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and using an antimicrobial mouthwash can help keep your gums healthy between visits.

When Gum Disease is Present

With regular dental hygienic visits to our Tigard dental office, you are doing your part in preventing possible gum disease.  Without regular dental visits, gum issues can develop.  When this happens, we recommend a more vigorous approach to fighting off periodontal problems. It will require more frequent cleanings in tandem with deeper cleanings.

We sometimes see patients who have difficulty understanding why we recommend a more aggressive approach to their dental hygiene program.

Here are a few reasons why we would suggest periodontal treatment. The bacteria that are associated with gum disease can get into the bloodstream.  Once that occurs, systemic health issues could be related to unhealthy gums. Here are a few examples of some of these conditions that have been clinically studied. 

Cardiovascular Disease:

Studies have shown that gum disease may increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. The bacteria associated with gum disease can enter the bloodstream, leading to inflammation and narrowing of the arteries, which can contribute to cardiovascular problems.

Diabetes:

Gum disease can make it more difficult to control blood sugar levels in individuals with diabetes. Conversely, uncontrolled diabetes can also worsen gum disease. The relationship between gum disease and diabetes is often bidirectional, with each condition exacerbating the other.

Respiratory Infections:

The bacteria present in the mouth due to gum disease can be inhaled into the lungs, potentially leading to respiratory infections such as pneumonia. Individuals with gum disease may have a higher risk of developing respiratory issues.

Pregnancy Complications:

Pregnant women with untreated gum disease may be at higher risk of pregnancy complications, including premature birth and low birth weight. Hormonal changes during pregnancy can make gums more susceptible to infection, emphasizing the importance of maintaining good oral health.

Rheumatoid Arthritis:

Some research suggests a link between gum disease and rheumatoid arthritis. Chronic inflammation associated with gum disease may exacerbate inflammation in the joints, worsening symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.

Alzheimer’s Disease:

While more research is needed, some studies have found a potential association between gum disease and Alzheimer’s disease. The bacteria associated with gum disease may contribute to brain inflammation and cognitive decline.

Kidney Disease:

Individuals with gum disease may be at higher risk of developing kidney disease. Chronic inflammation from gum disease can affect kidney function over time, leading to complications.

The clinical studies that have produced these risks should be enough to help anyone understand why we take Periodontal Maintenance so seriously.

These examples underscore the importance of maintaining good oral hygiene and seeking timely treatment for gum disease to not only protect oral health but also reduce the risk of systemic health issues. Regular dental check-ups and professional cleanings can help prevent and manage gum disease, promoting overall health and well-being.

At TruDentistry of Tigard, we are committed to helping you achieve and maintain healthy gums for a lifetime of smiles. Schedule your periodontal maintenance appointment today, and let’s work together to keep your gums healthy and your smile radiant.