Gum disease is a serious and chronic condition, but it is not an inevitable part of aging. As you age, your risk of developing gum disease increases. This may be a result of an increase in medication use, wearing dentures, or suffering from health issues like diabetes. In addition to visiting your dentist every six months, you can help prevent gum disease by following these oral health guidelines:

  1. Brush. Your teeth benefit from twice daily brushing. Use toothbrushes with soft bristles or an electric toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste, and brush gently for at least two minutes.
  2. Floss. Flossing once a day helps remove any food particles stuck between your teeth. Keeping these areas clean helps prevent inflammation that causes bleeding gums in Pittsburgh, PA.
  3. Rinse. Using antiseptic mouthwash after brushing and flossing every day helps protect your mouth from bacteria growth. A vigorous 30- to 60-second rinse is all that is needed.
  4. Clean. If you wear dentures, it is very important that you remove and clean them daily to avoid bacterial buildup and debris that can collect underneath.
  5. Eat. A well-balanced diet full of fibrous foods and dairy products helps fight off systemic and oral health issues. Incorporate whole grains, fruits and lean meat, and avoid processed sugars.
  6. Hydrate. Drinking water instead of soda products or coffee both helps keep you hydrated and wash away food debris. Tap water can contain fluoride, which helps prevent tooth decay.
  7. Quit. Smoking increases your risk for tooth decay, gum disease, and even tooth loss. Quitting smoking not only improves your oral health, but decreases your risk for lung or other cancers.
As you age, your risk increases for oral health conditions like gum disease. If you are maintaining a good oral hygiene routine, but begin to notice bleeding gums in Pittsburgh, PA, when you eat, brush, or floss, it may be time to schedule an appointment with Dr. Michael Stypula.