Dental Tips Blog


Get Rid of Gingivitis At Home with These 4 Easy Steps

Posted in Gum Disease

Gingivitis is inflammation of your gums. It’s a very common condition affecting people of all ages. If you’re dealing with it now, then you want to know how to get rid of it before it turns into something worse.

Fortunately, you can take measures here and now to start reducing the inflammation.

  1. Change Your Brush

It’s as simple as getting a more effective toothbrush. Look for one with soft bristles and a head that’s small enough to access all of your teeth. Many people with gingivitis like a powered brush because it’s good at removing the bacterial plaque that causes inflammation.

  1. Floss Daily

Flossing is good for preventing cavities. But it’s also essential for removing the plaque in between teeth that trigger gum inflammation. Flossing every day should eventually help your gums to bleed less.

  1. Antimicrobial Rinse

Look for an ADA-approved mouthwash that claims to kill bacteria. When used along with brushing and flossing, a rinse can prevent plaque buildup from recurring for long periods throughout the day.

  1. Vitamin C

Your gums can benefit a lot from just a little extra vitamin C in your diet. A strong immune system empowers your gums to fight off bacterial infections. Get lots of this water-soluble vitamin in strawberries, oranges, red peppers, kale, and other vegetables.

Fighting gingivitis is important because it can advance to periodontitis, a more serious form of gum disease. Periodontitis attacks the bone and ligaments that keep your teeth in place. It can also increase your risk of developing other health problems.

After doing what you can at home, make sure to schedule a checkup with your local dentist. Professional dental cleanings will help you maintain the best gum health possible.

Posted on behalf of:
Buford Family Dental
4700 Nelson Grogdon Blvd. NE #210
Buford, GA 30518


Gum Disease – Is It Written in Your Genes?

Posted in Gum Disease

If you don’t floss and brush regularly, your teeth will fall out from periodontitis.

Well, that’s only part of the story.

From what we do know about gum disease, there are a few thoroughly-understood risk factors:

  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Stress
  • Compromised immune system
  • Smoking

For the most part, these are controllable. They affect how the gums react to plaque bacteria that cause gum disease.

But why is it that some folks with terrible oral hygiene never suffer more than a mild case of gingivitis while some avid flossers can’t kick periodontitis?

Research suggests that the presence of disease-causing bacteria isn’t enough to trigger the problem. Rather, the way your body responds to them may be more important.

A genetic marker has been cautiously pegged as an indicator of being prone to gum disease. It needs to be studied more, but it lines up with other research and observations indicating that there is some hereditary factor.

What’s even more interesting is the fact that smoking in itself has proven to be a far bigger risk factor in gum disease than the presence of that marker. Smoking ups your risk so much that it doesn’t matter whether gum disease runs in your family or not.

What’s the takeaway here?

While there appears to be a genetic factor at play in the risk for periodontal disease, there is not yet a sure way to predict your individual chances. The best you can do for now is lower your risk with great oral hygiene and not smoking. Your local dental team can help you develop a personalized preventative plan.

Posted on behalf of:
Feather Touch Dental Care
1175 Peachtree St. NW Ste 1204
Atlanta, GA 30361
(404) 892-2097


Do Your Gums Bleed When You Brush? Something Could Be Very Wrong, Dentists Warn

Posted in Gum Disease

“My gums always bleed when I brush.”

“Flossing cuts my gums so I just don’t floss.”

“I never seem to have problems until the hygienist cleans my teeth.”

Don’t think we don’t know about those memes picking on dental professionals for making the patient bleed during treatment.

They are universal myths – bleeding gums are normal and dentists take delight in purposely irritating them during your appointment. Is that so? The truth just might surprise you.

Gums are very sensitive and complex tissues. They respond to things like hormones, infections, irritants, and medications. They even respond differently based upon genetics. Your gums are an extremely close reflection of the functionality of your immune system.

Like other body tissues that respond to infection, your gums can swell with disease-fighting agents and extra blood vessels to deliver them there. This inflammation stretches the thin skin on the surface and makes it more prone to damage.

It’s as simple as that. Sick gums are weak gums. If your gums bleed easily, 9 times out of 10 it’s because they are already suffering an infection. If not cared for, your gums can be the portal for bacteria to enter your body. Not only this, but your teeth can lose the support of gum tissue entirely and fall out.

If you take away nothing else from this post, remember this: your gums should not bleed at the dentist’s any more than your hands should bleed when you get a manicure. The same can be said of cleaning them. If your hands bled when you washed them, you might be a little concerned. Bleeding gums can be a sign of periodontal disease (gum disease) or other health concerns.

So why ignore gums that bleed? Do your gums a favor and visit your dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Crabapple Dental
12670 Crabapple Rd #110
Alpharetta, GA 30004
(678) 319-0123


Could There Be a Connection Between Arthritis and Your Gums?

Posted in Gum Disease

The potential connection between gum disease and rheumatoid arthritis has been a topic of interest all around the world.

While we’ve known for some time that there must be some kind of link between the two conditions, we still don’t know exactly what it is. We do know that both are inflammatory diseases. It definitely seems that having one of the two issues puts you at risk for the other.

Does Rheumatoid Arthritis Cause Gum Disease . . . ?

Some studies suggest that people with rheumatoid arthritis are up to five times more like to develop serious gum disease than those who don’t have arthritis.

A study in Germany also found that when cases of gum disease showed up among rheumatoid arthritis sufferers, it was more severe and aggressive than usual.

Could the two conditions share an even deeper relationship?

Genetics could have something to do with it. According to one study in Israel, a genetic marker (HLA-DR4) linked to rheumatoid arthritis was also found in 80% of study subjects with gum disease.

. . . Or Does Gum Disease Cause Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Another possible theory points to the fact that gum disease can make people up to four times more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis. It’s widely suggested that bacteria from the gum infection travel via the bloodstream and trigger inflammation in other areas of the body. This would directly contribute to a systemic condition like rheumatoid arthritis.

Are You At Risk?

Your local dentist can help you find out what your gum disease risk is. You can lower your chances by practicing excellent oral hygiene.

Posted on behalf of:
Bear Valley Dental Care
137 Montgomery Ave, Suite 200
Boyertown, PA 19512


Is Gum Disease Reversible?

Posted in Gum Disease

Yes and no. That’s because gum disease falls under two major categories. One is reversible. The other is not.


Gum inflammation usually starts in a superficial infection called gingivitis. When the gums around teeth get irritated by dental plaque, they turn red and a bit puffy. At this level, this beginning stage of gum disease is easily reversed by removing the plaque from the teeth. The swelling goes away when oral hygiene Improves.


Take things a bit further, and the situation gets more complicated. Deeper layers of gum tissue are made up of ligaments that hold your teeth in place. When these are affected by inflammation, they can start breaking down in a condition called periodontitis. These tissues don’t grow back on their own.

To make things worse, the infection can travel yet farther into the bone surrounding tooth roots. The bone that disappears from gum disease doesn’t grow back on its own. As a result, teeth can eventually fall out. Chronic periodontitis has well-researched links to inflammation and infection in the body, being implicated in problems like:

  • Diabetes
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Stroke
  • Pneumonia
  • Heart disease

Get Rid Of Gum Disease

If you just have a mild case of gingivitis, that can go away simply by upping your oral hygiene efforts. But to stop periodontitis in its tracks and restore the damage done, you need to see a dental professional.

Don’t be suckered in by claims of herbs, oils, and other at-home remedies for treating gum disease. You’ll just be wasting time unless it’s treated at the source with tools and medications only a dentist can recommend.

Suspect your gums may be in danger? Contact a dentist near you to get a complete gum health evaluation.

Posted on behalf of:
Carolina Smiles
3244 Sunset Blvd
West Columbia, SC 29169
(803) 794-2273



Is Scurvy Still A Thing?

Posted in Gum Disease

It’s not just pirate lingo – scurvy is a very real condition that still affects people even today. Scurvy isn’t a communicable disease like the common cold. Rather, it’s a deficiency of vitamin C, or ascorbic acid. This vitamin is found in many fresh foods including:

  • Strawberries
  • Kiwis
  • Citrus fruit
  • Tomatoes
  • Carrots
  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Papaya

In times past, scurvy was common among seafarers (like pirates) who didn’t have access to such fresh foods for months at a time. Today the condition is actually very rare, but people in certain groups are at risk. The elderly, those with sensitive food allergies, anorexia sufferers, alcoholics, and people who can’t or won’t make fresh foods a part of their diet are prone to scurvy.

Symptoms of this condition include appetite loss, diarrhea, fever, irritability, odd skin markings, and puffy, bleeding gums. If allowed to progress, scurvy can result in the loss of teeth. There are even indications that a vitamin C deficiency in pregnant mothers can adversely affect brain development of the baby.

Treatment and prevention for scurvy are the same: plenty of vitamin C. Our bodies can’t make this vitamin on their own and neither can they store it for long. That’s why it’s so important to get a healthy dose of it every day via a balanced diet loaded with fresh foods.

Interestingly, vitamin C is also essential for disease prevention and healing in the gums. Talk with your dentist about increasing your intake if you have been diagnosed with any form of gum disease. A daily glass of orange juice may be all it takes to keep your gums and body healthy with sufficient vitamin C.

Posted on behalf of:
Park Slope Dental Arts
506 3rd St
Brooklyn, NY 11215
(718) 962-0300


4 Things Your Smile Reveals About Your Sleep

Posted in Gum Disease

Did you know that many people discover they have a sleep disorder after a trip to the dentist?

The following complications are very common among American adults. By taking a good look at your mouth, you and your dentist might be able to figure out if any of these issues are a sign of a bigger problem…like obstructive sleep apnea.

  1. You Breathe With Your Mouth Open While You Sleep

This isn’t unusual if you have sinus issues. But breathing through your mouth can cause a few problems in your smile:

  • Higher risk for cavities and gum disease
  • Less healthy saliva flow
  • Gum recession

If you suffer from dry mouth and have puffy, rolled, red, or receded gums, then there’s a good chance your mouth is wide open to catch those Z’s!

  1. You Grind Your Teeth At Night

Flattened molars and biting edges are a good sign that you’re grinding your teeth together. This common habit usually happens while people are asleep and unaware of it. If you have sensitive aching teeth or are constantly damaging dental restorations, grinding/bruxism and clenching could be to blame.

  1. You’re A Restless Sleeper

Ever wake up with a headache and sore jaw? Stress could be causing you to clench them together in your sleep. This could be stress related to waking activities or the kind that accompanies vivid dreams.

  1. You Snore

Snoring is caused by tissues in the neck and throat collapsing over the airway. If you have extra tissue around your neck and often wake up with a sore throat and dry mouth, this could mean your body is struggling to breathe while you sleep.

Contact your dentist to learn more about the sleep and smile connection.

Posted on behalf of:
Dentistry of Highland Village
3651 Weslayan St. #208
Houston, TX 77027
(713) 360-7700


What Is a Tooth Abscess?

Posted in Gum Disease

An abscess is a pus-filled pocket that forms in gums or bone as a result of an infection. It can also occur alongside of teeth with serious periodontal disease. Most commonly, an abscess forms at the tip of a tooth root after it’s been compromised by decay or trauma.

Signs You May Have An Abscess 

An abscess can cause severe pain, but in some cases it won’t hurt at all. Other symptoms can include:

  • Pimple on the gums (where pus drains out)
  • Bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth
  • Your tooth is extremely sensitive to pressure and/or temperature
  • Swelling in your face
  • Red, swollen gums
  • Fracture or advanced decay in the tooth

Your dentist will most likely need to take an x-ray to pinpoint where the infection is originating.

Will It Go Away On Its Own?

No. This is a serious bacterial infection looking for a way out. As an abscess grows, it eats away at the tooth root and surrounding bone. There’s also a risk of the infection spreading to other parts of your body.

How To Treat An Abscessed Tooth

Get some relief by swishing lukewarm salt water to bring down inflammation and encourage the release of pressure. You can also take an over the counter medication such as ibuprofen.

These measures aren’t meant to buy you extra time. You still need to contact your dentist ASAP. If you have to wait for your appointment, these steps will help you get some relief before your scheduled visit.

Your dentist may need to drain the abscess if it’s very large. You’ll may even take some antibiotics. But to treat it thoroughly, your dentist will either need to do a root canal or extract the tooth.

The sooner your see your dentist, the sooner you’ll get relief and the better your chances of holding onto your natural tooth!

Posted on behalf of:
Riverheart Family Dentistry
8618 Mexico Road
O’Fallon, MO 63366
(636) 205-4045


What Happened on “Gum Health Day?”

Posted in Gum Disease

Friday May 12, 2017 marked the “European Gum Health Day,” supported by 27 of the national societies making up the European Federation of Periodontology (EFP). The event drew in extensive media coverage and here in it’s fourth year shows promising signs of further growth.

So, why was this a big deal?

The EFP unites national gum health societies from all over Europe, Caucasia, North Africa, and the Middle East. Their aim? Support research and education activities that promote periodontal (gum) health.

The annual event on May 12 marks an occasion of public outreach via university courses, conferences, media broadcasts, and free periodontal screenings. It’s estimated that millions of people were reached with an important message about gum health.

Why Gum Health Awareness Matters

It might seem like a silly thing to be so concerned about something as unimportant as gums. But is it, though?

You gums play an essential role in keeping your teeth anchored to your jaw. Additionally, their health is intricately connected to other body systems. Gum disease has been linked to some very serious conditions ranging from erectile dysfunction to stroke.

Alerting the general public to the importance of taking responsibility for their gum health is one way dental professionals build a stronger and healthier community. Awareness programs help people to identify:

  • Whether they are at risk for gum disease
  • Possible signs and symptoms of disease
  • Methods for preventing oral disease
  • Adequate treatment options for controlling gum disease

Here in the United States, there’s an entire month dedicated to national gum disease awareness. Don’t wait until next February, Gum Disease Awareness Month, to schedule a gum health checkup for every family member!

Posted on behalf of:
Dr. C Family Dentistry
13514 E 32nd Ave
Spokane Valley, WA 99216
(509) 591-9317


How Often Should You Be Brushing?

Posted in Gum Disease

What do you think?

A.) Once a day is enough

B.) As often as I can fit in one day!

C.) Right before a special event

There are mixed opinions when it comes to oral hygiene. A lot of it boils down to how much people value their teeth. We also tend to follow whatever brushing habits we were raised with.

Caring for your teeth is very important. It’s not just a matter of vanity – some folks truly don’t care about whether or not they have teeth to smile with. But the issue goes deeper than that.

Chronic tooth decay or gum disease also affects the rest of your body. Diabetes, pneumonia, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and more have all been connected to some oral health problem.

Brushing your teeth may be more important than you realized.

The minimum you should be brushing is two times a day. It’s important to brush in the morning to remove breakfast and whatever germs were cooking in your mouth the night before. Cleaning your teeth before bed is important so that your teeth don’t suffer by soaking in the acids and sugars of whatever you ate that day.

If you are able to brush after each meal, that’s great. Try not to brush directly after eating, however. That will only spread around the food acids. Rinse with water or wait about a half hour after eating before you brush.

It is possible to over-brush. Excessive or rough tooth-brushing can lead to worn spots in enamel and gum recession. So brush well, but don’t go crazy! Talk with your dentist for more tips on a healthy tooth-brushing routine.

Posted on behalf of:
Definition Dental
12850 SW Canyon Rd
Beaverton, OR 97005
(503) 644-8900

Most Popular

Tori, Exostosis, and Extra Bone Formation in the Mouth

A fairly common occurrence in the mouth is the existence of extra bone development along the outside or inside of the jawline near the teeth, or in the roof of…

Difference Between Conscious and Unconscious Sedation

Sedation dentistry is a wonderful option for many people who would not or cannot tolerate dentistry in a traditional dental setting.   Many people have a fear of visiting the dentist,…

Lingual Frenectomy versus Lingual Frenuloplasty

Lingual frenectomy and lingual frenuloplasty are both dental procedures used to correct a condition called ankyloglossia. Ankylogloassia, more commonly known as ‘tied tongue’, is an abnormality of the lingual frenulum….