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As the years go by there is more and more evidence that poor oral health impacts negatively on your overall health. The link between a high sugar diet, obesity and poor oral health is now so apparent that healthcare experts are keen to raise awareness of the links between them.

Recognising the signs
When it comes to your gums and recognising gum disease, it’s important to understand that the symptoms are not always painful, and you may not even be aware that you have a problem until it is quite advanced.

Early signs of trouble can include red and swollen gums and bleeding that occurs after you brush or floss your teeth. These symptoms are known as gingivitis, or gum inflammation, which on its own is usually easy to take care of by maintaining a good oral care routine and a healthy diet.

If you do notice any of these symptoms, we would still advise that you book an appointment with us at Ringley Park Dental Practice, Reigate to check if there is an underlying cause and give us the opportunity to give you advice on improving your oral care routine.

Don’t ignore it
Whatever you do, don’t ignore it, as if gingivitis is left untreated, the bone and tissue around teeth can also become affected. When gum disease reaches this stage, it is known as periodontitis.

Additional symptoms of periodontitis can include bad breath, an unpleasant taste in your mouth and abscesses on your gums which can be incredibly painful. Teeth can also become loose, which can cause issues in your day-to-day life and, even more seriously, can lead to tooth loss. Periodontitis is a condition which normally needs specialist treatment, and this is provided at Ringley Park Dental Practice by Dr Paul Barnes or Dr Omar Patel.

Gum disease can also increase your risk of other more serious health conditions and complications including stroke, diabetes and heart disease. The link between gum disease and Alzheimer’s is also one which is currently being investigated.

Act now!
Gingivitis and periodontitis are both treatable conditions. But avoiding gum disease in the first place is the best way to keep issues under control. Developing a good oral health routine, which includes brushing your teeth twice a day using a fluoride toothpaste and flossing once a day, will help prevent serious problems from occurring – and you can do even more by maintaining a healthy diet and cutting back on sugar.

If you’re a parent, think about introducing a good oral health routine to your child as early as possible, by brushing their teeth twice a day from the moment their first tooth comes through, and teaching them the importance of looking after their teeth and gums from an early age.

For both you and your children, regular hygiene visits and dental check-ups will help identify the early signs of gum disease, enabling our team to act fast and keep your gums healthy.

To book an appointment with one of our dentists or hygienists at Ringley Park Dental Centre, call 01737240123, Existing patients can also book online.