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3 Ways Dental Cleanings Can Benefit Your Gums

Flossing
You might have heard that regular dental visits and professional cleanings can help prevent cavities. However, did you know that these preventive visits can also help prevent or minimize gum disease? Although not as dramatic as a toothache in its early stages, gum disease (also called gingivitis or, in later stages, periodontal disease) is a very common dental health problem.

In fact, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 50% of people develop gum issues by the age of 30. If you'd like to avoid gum issues, then regular dental cleanings and following your dentist's advice for home care are vital. This guide lists three ways dental cleanings can improve and maintain your gum health.

1. Catching Trouble Early       
     
                                                              
Your dental visits allow your dental health professionals to get a good look inside your mouth every few months. While the changes to your gums may not be as obvious to you (especially since you look at your own smile every day so any changes would seem much more gradual to you), these professionals know exactly what signs to look for.

Your dentist can compare your gum condition both to what it was at your last visit and to objective standards for gum health. For example, when the dentist measures your gum pockets, which is where your tooth meets the gumline, your dentist is hoping for measurements of 1 to 3 millimeters deep. Measurements of 5 or 6 millimeters can be caused by gum disease.

By comparing the condition of your gums to objective standards and to your gums condition during your last visit, your dentist can tell whether your gum condition is deteriorating and take steps to correct that before more serious symptoms start to appear.

2. Monitoring Your Cleaning Habits

Some types of cavities commonly show up between your teeth if you don't floss regularly. This can alert your dentist that he or she needs to discuss cleaning habits with you. For example, if there's some reason that you can't use traditional floss (such as braces or a lack of physical ability) your dentist may recommend a water flosser to clean your gumline.

Flossing is crucial for your gum health. It's not just for cleaning between your teeth; it's also for cleaning down at your gumline and just beneath it. A buildup of plaque just under your gumline can create a haven for bacteria, which can create gum inflammation and jumpstart gum disease.

3. Removing Harmful Tartar

However, dental cleanings aren't just for patients who don't brush their teeth as often as they should or for patients that have hard-to-reach spots. In fact, professional cleanings are the only safe way to get rid of calcified plaque, known as tartar or calculus. Tartar can begin to develop 24 to 72 hours after plaque forms, so anytime you miss a spot you could be accumulating more tartar.

Unfortunately, despite being hardened, tartar is still a haven for the kinds of bacteria that can harm both your teeth and your gums. In addition, letting these bacteria thrive in your gums is a quick shortcut to inflammation, gum recession, tenderness, and other painful symptoms of gum disease.

These are just three ways in which professional dental cleanings can benefit not just your teeth but your gums as well. Keeping your gums in good health is critical because severe gum disease can result in bone loss and even tooth loss - in addition to the painful symptoms mentioned above.

Let Posada Dental help with your gum health by scheduling regular cleaning visits. Contact us today or visit us in Palmdale to learn more about our practice or to schedule an appointment at our office.

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