Next to tooth decay, gum disease, otherwise known as periodontal disease, is the most common cause of tooth loss. Gum disease is the chronic inflammation of the surrounding supporting soft tissues of the teeth. This is usually caused by the accumulation of plaque in the gum line which can later develop to tartar if not removed. Plaque and tartar in the gum line could cause gum infection which is called gingivitis. When gingivitis is not treated, it could lead to periodontitis, an inflammation of the surrounding tissues of the tooth. In periodontitis, your gums pulls away from your teeth, thus creating dental pockets, which could harbor bacteria. These bacteria can damage the connective tissues of the tooth which could eventually lead to tooth loss.
How to prevent gum disease? Easy. You need to stop plaque from accumulating and developing into tartar. You need to practice good oral hygiene regularly. You should brush your teeth every after meals and floss them at least once a day. It is very important to visit your dentist at least twice a year for dental check-ups and professional teeth cleaning.
In the presence of visible plaque and tartar accumulation, your dentist may have to perform deep cleaning, otherwise known as scaling and root planing. Scaling is the process of removing the layers of plaque and tartar found above and below the gum line. Root planing on the other hand, is removing the rough spots in the tooth roots where the bacteria come together. Advanced dental technology makes it possible to use a laser to remove plaque and tartar to prevent further complication of gum diseases.