Dr. Abas on the Dangers of Chronic Inflammation
May 28, 2020 / Category: Peterabasdds
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Our health and wellness have certainly been thrust into the spotlight over the last couple of months. Throughout the pandemic, doctors and researchers have highlighted how having comorbidities has an extremely negative effect on the body, especially in relation to recovery from COIVD-19. However, it is not just during a pandemic that overall health and wellness are vitally important. In fact, in our practice, patients who have chronic inflammation can also experience a range of dental pathology — perhaps most notably the painless dental disease: Periodontal disease. When your mouth is not in any discomfort but you have gum disease, the damage to your oral health can go unnoticed until it becomes a larger problem. Chronic conditions such as inflammation are showing that they can be interlaced with many other systemic conditions — making it vitally important to stay on top of your health and wellness to help prevent complications down the road such as gingivitis and periodontitis. Chronic inflammation occurs when the body’s immune system fails to maintain homeostasis—the consequences of this distress can be evidenced in your mouth.
Practicing good oral health is more than just preventing bad breath and preventing cavities. Our mouth is the entrance to the rest of our body, and an unhealthy mouth can lead to an unhealthy body. Gingivitis is caused by bacteria found in the bacterial biofilms in the mouth, commonly known as plaque. Plaque is colorless and constantly forms on the teeth and tissues in the mouth. The bacteria present in plaque irritate the gums, causing bleeding and sensitivity. Gingivitis is an acute inflammatory condition that does not have any evidence of bone loss. In order to minimize plaque buildup that can lead to gingivitis, there are a few things that we all need to do: brush twice daily, floss daily, and visit your trusty dentist, Dr. Abas, and amazing hygienist, Tina, to remove plaque and tartar from all those hard to reach areas. Fortunately, gingivitis can be reversed by having this plaque removed and maintaining good oral health practices.
Periodontitis is a form of chronic inflammation in the mouth that also involves bone loss. The bone loss causes the gums to recede, which forms pockets between the teeth and gums. It is in these pockets that tartar, plaque, and debris will gather, leading to infection and eventual abscesses. Periodontitis is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. Treating periodontitis is a multi-step approach that involves cleaning out the bacteria beneath the gums and ensuring that the bacteria is not able to adhere to the root of the tooth again. Keeping periodontal disease at bay involves similar steps at home, brushing and flossing regularly and gently brushing your tongue to prevent bacteria from rising above the gum line. Individuals with periodontitis will need to see their dentist a bit more often than those with healthy gums or mild gingivitis. Typically, those with periodontal disease need to be seen for periodontal maintenance three to four times per year rather than the traditional twice yearly.
Inflammatory conditions can seriously impact your health. Lifestyle changes can help to mitigate inflammation levels, such as quitting smoking /vaping, getting plenty of exercises, sleeping the recommended 7-8 hours per night, and developing a consistent and thorough oral care routine. Maintaining a healthy diet and avoiding processed foods are also great practices that will not only benefit your oral health but your full bodily health as well. We are here to help you maintain a healthy lifestyle! Visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/peterabasdds or give us a call at 949.586.1127 and see how we can help to support you in your oral health care routine.