A beautiful smile not only enhances our appearance but also boosts our confidence. However, when gum disease strikes, it can significantly impact our smile’s aesthetics. Most people think of gum disease as an issue that affects your health. Unfortunately, it can cause damage to the look of your smile. Luckily, your dentist has several treatment options to restore your oral health and regain your smile.
The Cosmetic Consequences of Gum Disease
One of the main ways gum disease affects the look of your smile is through gum recession. As gum disease progresses, the gum tissue pulls away from the teeth, exposing more of the tooth roots. This can make your teeth appear longer and create an uneven gumline. This can compromise the balance of your smile.
Gum recession exposes the sensitive tooth roots, leading to tooth sensitivity and potential staining. Additionally, the exposed roots are more susceptible to decay and damage, further impacting the appearance of your smile.
Treatment Options for Gum Disease
Fortunately, effective treatment options are available to address gum disease and restore the aesthetics of your smile.
Scaling and Root Planing
Scaling and root planing is a non-surgical deep cleaning procedure a dental professional performs. It involves removing plaque and tartar from the tooth surfaces and smoothing the root surfaces to promote gum reattachment. This treatment helps control gum disease and promotes the healing of gum tissue.
For cases of severe gum recession, gum grafting may be necessary to restore the look of your smile. In this procedure, a dentist will take tissue from one area of your mouth and graft it onto the affected area. This helps to cover the exposed tooth roots and rebuild the gumline. As a result, you will have a more even smile.
In cases where gum disease causes major damage, cosmetic dentistry procedures can improve the health and look of your teeth and gums. These options may include porcelain veneers, dental crowns, or orthodontic work to realign your teeth and gums.
Maintaining Good Oral Hygiene
While treatment options are available, prevention is always better than cure. Having good oral hygiene is crucial to prevent gum disease and protecting the beauty of your smile.
Brushing and Flossing
Regular brushing, using a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste, is vital to remove plaque and bacteria that can lead to gum disease. Don’t forget to floss daily to clean between your teeth and along the gumline.
Scheduling regular dental cleanings is vital for the early detection and prevention of gum disease. Dental professionals can remove plaque and tartar buildup that you can’t get rid of with brushing and flossing alone.
Lifestyle Changes for Gum Disease
Making a few lifestyle changes can significantly reduce your risk of gum disease and protect your smile.
A diet rich in nutrients supports healthy gums and teeth. Include foods high in vitamins C and D, calcium, and antioxidants. Also, avoid sugary snacks and drinks, as they help the growth of bacteria that cause gum disease.
Smoking and tobacco use are major risk factors for gum disease and impact the look of your smile. Quitting these habits can greatly improve your oral health.