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Three Interesting Facts You May Not Know About Gum Disease

September 6, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — chaskadentistteam @ 10:38 am
Closeup of someone with inflamed gums

If you’re someone who reads or thinks about your oral health often, gum disease may feel a little bit passe. It’s a fairly common condition, and in many people it’s mild enough that they hardly notice that they have it.

However, the truth is that gum disease is one of the most complex and interesting conditions in all of dentistry. There’s a lot more to the illness than meets the eye—if you’re curious, here are a few things you may not know about it.

1. Gum Disease Isn’t Usually Treated with Antibiotics

As you may know, gum disease is caused by bacterial infection. That being the case, you may wonder if it’s treated like strep throat—with a round of antibiotics. While this is done occasionally, the typical treatment for gum disease is considerably easier.

Instead, most of the time dentists will simply perform a deep cleaning, removing the buildup of plaque and tartar around the gumline. In many cases, this is enough to make gum disease manageable. Good news for people who aren’t a fan of antibiotics, or who just would prefer a much faster treatment.

2. Gum Disease Is Connected to Cardiovascular Health

You might rightfully wonder what your gums could possibly have to do with your heart, but recent research suggests that there is a connection between the two. It’s been found that patients with gum disease have a higher risk of developing cardiovascular issues.

The connection is so solid that even the American Heart Association has acknowledged the link. While the exact cause isn’t 100% clear, its thought that the bacteria in the mouth can seep into the bloodstream and form plaque deposits, much like those in the mouth. This raises blood pressure, increasing the chances of heart disease.

3. Saliva Prevents Gum Disease

Saliva begins digestion by breaking down food particles in the mouth and carrying them into the stomach. Without it, these foods linger in the mouth longer, feeding the bacteria that live there and contributing to gum disease.

If you find yourself with chronic dry mouth, you may want to talk to a dentist about dealing with that in order to better maintain your oral health.  

About the Author

Dr. Mark Stapleton has a passion for helping his patients reform their oral health, and the relationships that he forms with his patients makes that work all the more satisfying. Even after 20 years of being in the field, he hasn’t tired of it in the slightest. Dr. Stapleton received his degree from the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry and furthered his clinical expertise with an Advanced Education in General Dentistry residency at the University of Florida College of Dentistry.

If you have any questions about gum disease, we can be reached at our website or by phone at (952) 448-2868.

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