Gum disease is the main cause of missing teeth. It can be completely unnoticed right up to the point of losing your teeth. When symptoms do occur, they consist of bleeding or red gums and loose teeth. If you have previously been told you require surgery for infected gums, you’ll be happy to know it can potentially be controlled with nonsurgical methods in the early stages.
Gum Disease Can Contribute to Heart Disease and Even Stroke
Dentists are very concerned with recent medical research that has discovered a link between gum disease and serious health conditions like diabetes, stroke, and heart conditions. The American Dental Association has estimated that nearly 80% of the American population has some stage of gum disease. At such a high percentage, most dentists consider this to be an epidemic. And now it has been shown to affect more than your teeth – it plays a role in keeping or changing your overall good health.
The American Academy of Periodontology reports, “studies found periodontal infection may contribute to the development of heart disease, increase the risk of premature, underweight births, and pose a serious threat to people whose health is already compromised due to diabetes and respiratory diseases.” When gums are infected, the bacteria enter the blood stream and travel to all the vital organs in the body.
Gum surgery is the only option with advanced periodontal disease. If treated in the earlier stages, there are nonsurgical methods that also work well, together with improved dental hygiene. Both approaches are generally covered under most dental insurance plans.
Surprisingly, many people think it is no big deal to lose a tooth. Since you can’t die from it, why would it be a problem? Losing even one tooth can cause the other teeth to move, which is not good. It can affect chewing, which means you may not absorb as many nutrients as you should. When it becomes difficult to chew, you may also switch to softer foods that often have higher calories and lower nutritional value. This often leads to unwanted weight gain. Your face eventually will take on a hollowed or sunken look, which makes you appear older than you are. Your speech can be affected, and who wants that embarrassment?
Dental implants are the best solution for the problem of missing teeth. Implants can replace one or many teeth, even in your whole mouth. And best of all, no one will ever know they are not yours, as they look great and function just like real teeth.