Good dental hygiene is one of the first, and hopefully longest-lasting, habits that we learn as children. Yet, as you grow older, you might forget its importance from time to time, and perhaps become less diligent in keeping your teeth and gums clean. In fact, many people do, which is why tooth decay and gum disease remain significant problems. A lack of dental hygiene can also lead to more worries about tooth loss, since dental health issues (particularly gum disease) are the most common causes of missing teeth. Fortunately, in many cases, remembering the tenets of good dental hygiene that you learned as a child can be your most effective weapon in your efforts to avoid losing teeth.
Common Tooth Loss Causes
Before you can effectively prevent tooth loss, it helps to know what causes it so you can minimize your risk factors. Dental injuries are common, especially for hockey players, and as the result of an accident, a knocked-out tooth may not always be prevented. You can, however, lower your risks of tooth loss by wearing a mouthguard when playing rough contact sports.
Nevertheless, the most common cause behind tooth loss is gum disease, which affects over 70% of adults in the United States. Also known as periodontal disease, the condition affects the soft gum tissues that surround your teeth, as well as the periodontal ligaments that hold your teeth’s roots firmly in your jawbone’s sockets. In its severe stages, gum disease also erodes the jawbone itself, deteriorating the structures that support and sustain your teeth.
A Preventive Lifestyle
The dangerous thing about gum disease is that you might not realize you have it until it’s already destroyed a significant amount of your oral health. There are warning symptoms during gum disease’s early development, such as bleeding and swollen gums. Yet, since there is usually little or no discomfort until its more severe stages, you may be more apt to write the warning signs off as nothing to worry about. The best way to keep gum disease at bay is to brush and floss your teeth twice daily, at least, and by attending your regular dental checkups and cleanings without fail. The focus of good hygiene and preventive dentistry is to control the mechanisms that could otherwise lead to devastating issues, including the plaque and bacteria that lead to gum disease.
ABOUT YOUR FT. WORTH FAMILY DENTIST:
Dr. Bob Jing has served patients and their families across Dallas/Ft. Worth for many years. Together with his caring, compassionate, and highly-skilled team at 7 Day Dental, Dr. Jing is dedicated to making good dental health available to as many people as possible. To learn more, or to schedule a consultation or appointment, contact our office closest to you at 817-405-2001 on Jacksboro Highway, or at 817-405-0195 on Seminary Drive.