Right now, as you are reading this, 500 to 600 different kinds of active micro-organisms make your mouth their cozy home. When you add up 50,000 from one species and 100,000 from another species, it’s easy to see why many dentists say that your mouth has more bacteria living in it than there are people in the city of New York. And, just like New York city, they NEVER sleep. They only do two things: munch on food left in your teeth and make bacteria babies.
Most people don’t like to talk about it, however, there is one more thing they do and that’s what causes all the problems. They dump out their waste product. Their bacteria poop is toxic to your teeth and gums.
Gum disease is a result of plaque, the sticky film of bacteria poop that constantly builds up on your teeth. The bacteria’s poop (plaque) has chemicals that attack your teeth and your gum tissue.
Gum disease (also known as gingivitis) is very common in adults and is the leading cause of tooth loss. Research shows that over 75% of Americans age 35 and over have some form of gum disease as a result of medications, diet, or lack of adequate dental hygiene care.
Common symptoms of gum disease are:
• bleeding gums after brushing
• blood red color gums
• sores on the gums
• swollen gums
• bad breath (halitosis)
With regular professional cleanings and a quality at-home oral hygiene routine, the plaque can be kept to a minimum and gum disease can be averted. In addition, gum disease damage to teeth and gums are also very simple to turn around, if caught early by Dentistry NW.
Dentistry NW hygienists provide gentle, thorough cleanings that get rid of the plaque coating that regular brushing fails to remove. They also provide education and instruction on how to get rid of the most plaque possible at home. Research also shows that lasers appear to kill germs and bacteria that can cause gum disease and decay making treatments with laser healthier for patients, which is why we use the Waterlase Dental Laser.
Recent studies have shown an association between gum disease and increased risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke, low birth weight and diabetes. Because gum disease can have an adverse effect on your over-all health, Dr. Smith strongly suggest getting professional cleanings at least every six months.
Gum disease is usually painless at the beginning, so you may not be aware that you have it. Combine that with the fact that gum disease is nearly impossible for the patient to self-diagnose and it becomes obvious why you need to see us regularly. At your cleanings, the doctors and a Dentistry NW hygienist will take depth measurements of the shallow, v-shaped crevice (called a sulcus) between your teeth and gums to determine if you have gum disease.
Gum disease attacks just below the gum line in the sulcus, where it breaks down the connective tissues. As the tissues are damaged, the sulcus develops into a pocket; generally, the deeper the pocket, the more severe the disease. In fact, pockets can get so deep that your tooth is no longer attached to your gums or jawbone. And, that’s when they fall out.
1628 S. Mildred #206 • Tacoma, WA 98465 Phone: (253) 460-1800 • Fax: (253)460-0697
Monday...................................8:00 A.M. - 4:30 P.M.
Tuesday...................................8:00 A.M. - 4:30 P.M.
Wednesday.............................8:00 A.M. - 6:00 P.M.
Thursday.................................7:30 A.M. - 4:30 P.M.
Friday.......................................7:30 A.M. - 3:00 P.M.
Saturdays by Appointment only between
8:00 A.M. - 1:00 P.M.