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Can You Reverse Gum Disease?

Gum disease is common among adults over the age of 30. The disease can range from mild inflammation, such as gingivitis, to a more severe condition known as periodontitis. Gum disease should be addressed as early on as possible, because it is possible to reverse the disease in earlier stages.

In order to reverse your gum disease, you need to be aware of the early signs so that you can take action as soon as you notice a problem. The first stage of gum disease is gingivitis, and it is reversible. The signs include red or swollen gums, bleeding gums when you brush your teeth or floss, bad breath, sensitive teeth, and excessive tartar buildup.
To reverse gum disease and prevent it from coming back, you need to practice good oral hygiene. This means brushing your teeth two times a day with a soft-bristle toothbrush and flossing at least once a day. Brushing and flossing will help keep plaque off your teeth, which means the bacteria won’t be there to irritate your gums. Replace your toothbrush if it is old or frayed. If the bristles are worn, they don’t clean as well around the gum line where you’re most prone for bacteria buildup.
Drink water throughout the day, because saliva helps wash away bacteria from your gums and teeth. Eating nutrient-rich foods can boost your immune system and decrease the progression of gum disease. Finally, quit smoking if you do. Smokers are more likely to get gum infections, and your gums have a harder time healing if you smoke.  
Dental checkups also help reverse gum disease and prevent it. Your dentist looks for decay and early signs of gum disease during your checkup. Professional dental cleaning removes buildup of tartar that your toothbrush cannot. These cleanings help keep plaque and tartar off your teeth and reduces your risk of developing gum disease. 

Last Updated: April 28, 2016

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