A healthy person is typically thought of as someone with a fit, athletic body. The body parts that come to mind are toned abs, strong arms, and tight legs. The mouth is not a body part that is usually tied to health, but it should be. If you have a healthy mouth, it can have a strong, positive effect on the health of the rest of your body.
One way that a mouth falls into poor health is when it develops gum disease. Gum disease (or periodontal disease) occurs when bacteria in your mouth forms plaque, which can later harden into tartar. If that tartar is not treated in an adequate amount of time, the gums can become inflamed.
Once the inflammation begins, the gums can start to separate from the tooth. If the separation is severe enough, it leads to the deterioration of bone and tissue in your mouth. Bad stuff, indeed.
Stopping Gum Disease
It’s not all gloom and doom, though. Typically, if you catch the inflammation fast enough, you can treat your mouth and prevent further damage. But how do you know if you have the early stages of gum disease? Here are 6 warning signs:
- Bleeding gums – Your gums bleed easily during normal activities like brushing your teeth or flossing. This is one of the first signs of gum disease.
- Gums pulling away from teeth – If you smile into a mirror and notice your gums pulling back away from the base of your teeth, this is a warning sign. Sometimes you notice this first when moving your tongue around your mouth.
- Swollen gums – If you notice redness in your gums, or they feel swollen and tender, this should set off alarms.
- Pus in between teeth – This one is definitely kind of icky. Pus is a sign of infection, and should be treated accordingly. If you have gum disease, pus will often show up between your teeth and gums when you press them.
- Bad breath – This is one of the more embarrassing warning signs because it’s something other people notice. Because of the embarrassing effect, this is often the symptom that gets people to actually visit a dentist.
- Change in tooth arrangement – This symptom could take a few different forms. Sometimes you notice that your bite doesn’t fit together the way it used to. Other times, you start to see separations between your teeth. If you have partials or dentures, you might notice they don’t fit like they used to.
If you develop any of these warning signs, you should set up an appointment with a dentist immediately. With swift treatment, these symptoms can be reversed, and you can fight back against harmful gum disease. Doesn’t everyone want a healthy mouth?