What Are the Causes of Gum Disease?

What Are the Causes of Gum Disease?

Posted by DENTAL CONCEPTS on Oct 12 2022, 07:06 AM

What Are the Causes of Gum Disease?

Gum disease is a serious oral health condition that can lead to tooth loss if left untreated. If you have symptoms of gum disease, it’s important to see a dental professional as soon as possible. The sooner gum disease is treated, the less likely you are to lose your teeth.

Here are the factors resulting in gum disease:

Poor Oral Hygiene

The primary cause of gum disease is bacteria. When plaque and tartar are not thoroughly removed from your teeth through brushing and flossing, the millions of harmful bacteria that exist in your saliva can infect your gums and cause inflammation and infection. This infection can lead to a host of problems for your oral health. In fact, some studies have found that people with chronic periodontal disease are more likely to develop heart disease than those with healthy gums.

By practicing good oral hygiene habits at home and scheduling regular checkups with your dentist, you can protect your smile from the effects of gum disease. Along with improving your overall oral health, visiting your dentist regularly can also help you prevent common issues such as tooth decay and cavities.

Diabetes

Your body’s immune system is designed to fight infections like gum disease. However, if your immune system is weakened due to certain medications or health issues—like diabetes—you may be more susceptible to gum disease. 

Tobacco Use

Smoking cigarettes has a number of harmful side effects, including an increased risk of periodontal disease. This may be due to the increased plaque buildup on the teeth or the increased risk of developing oral cancers. Other tobacco products, such as chewing tobacco, can also increase the risk of gum disease.

In addition to nicotine, other harmful chemicals may also be present in tobacco that can negatively affect your oral health. These substances can lead to tooth discoloration and bad breath, both of which can detract from your smile’s appearance.

Hormonal Changes

Women’s bodies go through a lot of changes during pregnancy and menopause, causing hormonal fluctuations that can affect the gums.

Hormone levels can increase when a woman is pregnant or going through menopause, which can result in increased gum sensitivity. In fact, pregnancy gingivitis is a common problem that affects over 50% of women in the United States. After pregnancy, the mother’s body goes through hormone changes to prepare for breastfeeding. This change in hormones can also cause the gums to be more sensitive than usual.

Hormone level changes can cause the gums to become red, inflamed, swollen, and painful. If left untreated, these can progress into more serious issues such as periodontitis.

Genetics

While some people are more susceptible to gum disease than others, genetics can play a part too. If you have a family history of gum disease or poor oral hygiene habits, you may be at risk as well.

If you wish to learn more about our dental procedures, please schedule an online appointment or call us at (773) 374-9778 for Chicago and (708) 914-4381 for Homewood to have a consultation with Dr. Moore, and we will be happy to help.

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