MOST PEOPLE HAVE MADE a regular habit of brushing their teeth, which is fantastic. But some people might not be the best brushers. Brushing your teeth actually should include more than just your teeth. Let’s talk about an important but often-overlooked element of your oral hygiene: your gums.

Gums play a vital role in the mouth by helping protect and support teeth. However, these sensitive tissues can be quite vulnerable to disease and infection. The same plaque that builds up and causes damage to your teeth can also harm your gums. This begins as inflammation and sensitivity, but can soon advance to serious periodontal disease. Gums can pull away from the teeth and the infection can destroy connective tissues, causing teeth to loosen and even fall out.

The best way to treat gum disease? By preventing it! Fortunately, prevention is easy. By removing plaque and bacteria from the mouth, the threat is managed. Be sure to brush twice a day, including your gums. Don’t use harsh, side-to-side strokes as these can damage the gums. Instead, hold your brush at a 45-degree angle to your gums and use smaller, gentler motions.

It is also vital to include flossing in your daily routine. Only flossing can remove built-up plaque between the teeth. If flossing causes bleeding, try to go a little easier. It should stop happening in a few days. Using an antiseptic mouth rinse can kill the rest of the bacteria in your mouth.

By keeping your gums a part of your oral health routine, your whole mouth will be healthier.

For more information about oral health or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Powell, please call West Jordan Dental Office today.