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The Centers for Disease Control estimate that nearly half of the American population over 30 years old has some degree of gum disease. Residual food particles and plaque can develop into hardened tartar near the gum line. This continual exposure to bacteria caused gum tissues to inflame.

Gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease. This usually results in red or inflamed gums that tend bleed easily when you brush and floss. It’s not uncommon for gingivitis to also cause issues with chronic bad breath.

An effective daily oral hygiene routine is essential for preventing gingivitis. This involves brushing your teeth twice a day with a soft bristled toothbrush and abrasive toothpaste. Immediately after you finish brushing you should floss between your teeth and along the gum line, before it can harden into tartar.

If gingivitis is left unchecked it will develop into the more dangerous form of gum disease, known as periodontitis. This deep infection eventually causes your gums to pull back from the base of your teeth opening up pockets of infection near the roots of your teeth. It can even cause bone loss in the structural part of your jaw that anchors your teeth in your mouth.

It can be very hard to remove tartar with the tools and products available in stores. Fortunately, your regular dental checkup includes a cleaning procedure to clean away hardened tartar, while also monitoring your mouth for signs of gum disease.

If you are concerned that you might be developing gum disease or you are overdue for your regular dental cleaning, please call Scott Thompson, DMD at 802-879-7811 to schedule an appointment.