The newsLINK Group - Risk Factors for Periodontal Disease

Editorial Library Category: General Business | Dental | Periodontist – Gum Disease Topics: Periodontal Disease Title: Risk Factors for Periodontal Disease Author: newsLINK Staff Synopsis: Periodontal disease is something that no one wants, but everyone can prevent to some extent by making wise choices. Your choices don’t cause or prevent periodontal disease; they just make it more or less likely that you will develop periodontal disease. Editorial: Risk Factors for Periodontal Disease 4064 South Highland Drive, Millcreek, Utah 84124 │ thenewslinkgroup.com │ (v) 801.676.9722 │ (tf) 855.747.4003 │ (f) 801.742.5803 Editorial Library | © The newsLINK Group LLC 1 Periodontal disease is something that no one wants, but everyone can prevent to some extent by making wise choices. Your choices don’t cause or prevent periodontal disease; they just make it more or less likely that you will develop periodontal disease. They also affect how fast the disease develops, and how severe it becomes. If you have more than three of the risk factors for periodontal disease, you are at an exponentially greater risk than if you just have one. In fact, even having just three risk factors puts you at 27 times the risk. To safeguard your dental health, do the following: Keep your mouth clean by brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash on a regular basis. Poor oral hygiene is an important cause of periodontal disease, and it can be completely under your control. Exercise, control your weight, and eat a healthy diet. You will be less likely to develop type 2 diabetes; in turn, you will be less likely to develop periodontal disease. Stop smoking. Select a good dentist. Poor dental work is a contributing factor. If you have any reason to believe that your dentist has not given you the best possible care, switch to someone else. Visit your dentist regularly and practice preventive care. Fillings age over time and may need to be repaired or replaced. Your mouth can change, too, and a bridge that used to fit might need to be fixed so that it fits correctly. If your teeth are crooked, get braces and have them straightened. Some of the other risk factors are more complicated, and they might be difficult or impossible to control: Your genetic heritage Stress An underlying problem in your immune system, such as AIDS Medications with the side effect of causing dry mouth A previous case of periodontal disease For women, hormonal changes are a risk factor. That means being pregnant or taking the pill can cause problems. If you are a woman in your child-bearing years, it is therefore extremely important to make sure you take good care of yourself when it comes to dental care. The two biggest risk factors are diabetes and smoking. Diabetes is bad news for your dental health; not only are you more likely to develop periodontal disease, you are also more likely to have the periodontal disease negatively impact your diabetes, because it increases insulin resistance and therefore makes it harder to maintain glycemic control. If you have diabetes, be sure to talk to both your doctor and your dentist about how to best maintain your health in all areas. Smoking is the biggest controllable factor for developing periodontal disease. Bone resorption is faster in smokers, meaning you lose bone, including in your jaw … and then you lose teeth. It also causes chronic inflammation and it suppresses antibodies. Some people have no trouble quitting a smoking habit, and others find it a continual struggle. No matter where you are on the spectrum, quitting smoking is one of the best things you can do for your entire body, not just your mouth. Whatever the risk factor might be, identifying it and, if possible, getting rid of it is a first step to keeping your good dental health.

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