Gentle Dental of Westland
825 S Wayne Road, Westland, MI 48186

Watching out for gum disease is as important as preventing tooth decay

Watching-out-for-gum-disease-is-as-important-as-preventing-tooth-decay

There are a lot of ways to describe gum disease – gingivitis, periodontitis, receding gums and inflammation. But whatever term is used, the result may be the same. Tooth pain, inflamed gums and possible loss of teeth in extreme cases can result.

Gingivitis accounts for about 70 percent of gum disease and usually shows itself by bleeding when teeth are brushed and flossed or by the presence of continuous bad breath. It starts with bacteria lodged at the gum line when teeth aren’t properly cleaned and can lead to inflammation.

Left untreated, gingivitis may evolve into periodontitis, a more serious form of gum disease that occurs in about 30 percent of cases. Typically, periodontitis develops when inflammation has proceeded to the point that connective tissue and the bone that supports the teeth are affected.

While the teeth may remain healthy, if the gums aren’t strong enough to support them, tooth loss can occur, according to WedMD.com. That’s why it’s important to keep gum disease at bay at the first sign of a problem. Receding gums, pain at the gum line, sensitivity to hot and cold or red, puffy gums are indications that inflammation is present and gum disease has begun.

When gum disease occurs
Gum disease can begin as early as the teen years, although it is principally a condition of aging. Most people don’t experience this dental problem until they are past the age of 40, and it tends to worsen as people get older.

The American Dental Association warns that other factors can bring about gum disease, such as pregnancy and the hormonal changes that stem from it as well as health problems such as diabetes. Certain medications may aggravate gum health as well. As a result, patients should tell their dentists of any health issues they are experiencing.

Smoking is also a culprit, because the toxins in tobacco can contribute to gum loss. Stopping the habit will not only help halt the progression of gum inflammation, but it will improve the appearance of teeth, which can yellow from contact with tobacco.

Lessen gum problems
By far, the biggest influence in developing gum disease is the lack of good dental hygiene. When people don’t brush, floss and rinse with mouthwash on a regular basis, they aren’t cleaning away substances such as food and beverages that will coat their teeth and gums and cause damage. That leads to plaque buildup and tartar on the teeth, which may irritate and inflame the gums.

Dentists recommend using a soft-bristle brush and gentle brushing because it is easier on the gums and tooth enamel. Brushing two or three times a day and flossing at least once is often advised, along with regular rinsing with an antiseptic mouthwash.

The importance of flossing at least once – and preferably twice – each day is also stressed by dentistry experts. Floss penetrates deeply between teeth to get rid of any food bits and bacteria that may remain after brushing. It also strengthens the gums and helps to remove plaque before it builds up to a damaging level.

Prevention counts
The gums are the glue that cements the dental structure together. They encase the roots and nerves and hold teeth securely to the bone. Paying attention to gum health is as important as taking care of one’s teeth. By checking for gum disease early, people can prevent teeth from loosening or sensitivity around gum lines from occurring.

Regular check-ups at the dentist office will allow the condition of gum tissue to be evaluated periodically. Any deterioration will show up on X-rays along with tooth decay that has developed.

Read What Our Patients Say
Patient Reviews
My hygienist Marilyn is the best. She’s such a nice person. Doctor Hanan is nice as well and thorough. The staff is friendly as well. They are what their name says that they are. Gentle!
Crochetah J.
Friendly staff, they did their best to make me feel comfortable.
Saundra B.
Very clean and respectful
Brittney M.
All around great visit. I had to go in on an emergency, and they were able to get me in within 24 hours. I had an unpleasant dental situation that had to be attended to, and Dr. Hanan, Tameka and the […]
Mel K.
The staff at Gentle Dental was very professional and courteous. I would recommend Gentle Dental to everyone I know.
Curtis P.
The very friendly professional Dr. Carpenter and ieesha, were very helpful and polite, they also had me in and out,there wasn’t a long wait time. I would recommend them to everyone! Thanks
Brenda R.
The staff were very friendly and helpful. Dr. Carpenter took really good good care of me during my procedure which was a long and hard one. I didn’t feel one bit of pain. Not even when he was doing […]
Deborah G.
Everyone was very friendly and took good care of my kids.
Ethan W.
The entire staff is very friendly and polite , the ladies up front are AWESOME , The Hygienist is very gentle and personable and does a great job .
JASON B.
I love how April takes her time to understand each patient needs to make everyone comfortable, my daughter has special needs and April was very patient with her. I bring all 3 of my daughters to her. […]
Londyn A.
Very attentive staff, friendly dentist and quick service.
Phil S.
Very pleasant people. They make sure you are comfortable.
Jessica B.
Dr.keller and Tammy great service you will love it
Britney H.
Good care, helpful staff
Maya T.
Always willing to work with you. Service was excellent and staff was friendly!
Mikel F.
Very professional and kind.
Barbara M.
I like how they treat my son
David O.
Gentle Dental is the perfect name for this office. Thank you Frances Ashley Marilyn Ronnie and the rest of the staff that take their time with their patients. Loving and warm environment.
David M.
We were called on time of our appt…also we didn’t have to wait we were out of the office in a timely fashion
Tristen S.
I really have a fear of dentist offices. Here tho i felt comfortable and relaxed. Can honestly say I’m looking forward to coming back.
De'Juan W.
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  • Monday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Tuesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Wednesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Thursday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Friday 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
  • Saturday 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM
  • Sunday Closed
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