Preventing Periodontal & Gum Disease New York City & Manhattan

Gum disease is a serious dental condition and the leading cause of tooth loss in adults 35 and older. With more than 3 million new cases of gum disease in the US every year, 3 out of 4 adults will be affected by gum disease at some point in their lifetime. Gum disease, which can be completely prevented by proper oral hygiene including twice daily tooth brushing and daily flossing of the teeth, requires a dentist’s intervention once it is detected in order to stop the spread of the disease.

What is Gum Disease?

Our mouths are full of bacteria, which cause plaque to form on our teeth. While proper brushing and flossing can remove plaque, New York City & Manhattan residents who do not practice proper oral hygiene will see their plaque turn into tartar, which can only be removed by a professional teeth cleaning.

The longer you go with plaque and tartar on your teeth, the more likely you are to develop a gum disease called gingivitis, which makes your gums red, swollen and bleed easily. Gingivitis is reversible with proper dental care, but if left untreated, it can turn into periodontitis. This inflammation around the tooth causes gums to pull away from the teeth and form pockets that become infected. If periodontitis is not treated professionally, the bones, gums and tissue that support the teeth can become destroyed, resulting in tooth loss.

What Causes Gum Disease in New York City & Manhattan Patients?

In addition to poor oral hygiene, gum disease can be caused by:

  • Clenching & Grinding Teeth
  • Diabetes
  • Medications
  • Stress
  • Poor Nutrition
  • Tobacco Usage
  • Hormonal Changes in Women

Tobacco Usage & Gum Disease

We all know that smoking and chewing tobacco is bad for your health, but did you know that it is also a leading cause of tooth loss? Many studies have linked gum disease with tobacco usage. When you use tobacco, you are more likely to develop calculus on your teeth, form deeper pockets between your gums and your teeth and lose the bone and fibers that hold your teeth in place in your mouth. Additionally, tobacco usage slows down the healing process of gum disease treatment, making tobacco usage even more detrimental for New York City & Manhattan gum disease patients.

In addition to gum disease, tobacco usage can cause cancer in the mouth, oral sores, gum recession, loss of bone, tooth loss, tooth staining and make gum disease and dental implant treatments less effective. If you are a smoker or chew tobacco, the best thing you can do for both your oral and overall health is to quit now. If you need help quitting, talk to Dr. Kissel about getting enrolled in a tobacco cessation program.

Diabetes & Gum Disease

One of the many complications of diabetes is the increased risk of gum disease, especially amongst those with uncontrolled diabetes. Not only may these bacterial infections of the mouth result in tooth decay and loss, they can also inhibit your body’s ability to process insulin, making it even more difficult for you to control your diabetes and blood sugar levels. If you’re a diabetic, you can prevent your risk of developing gum disease by controlling your blood sugar levels and practicing proper oral hygiene, including brushing twice daily, flossing your teeth once a day and having regular professional dental cleanings.

Women & Gum Disease

The various hormonal changes that women undergo in their lifetimes can cause gum disease in New York City & Manhattan residents. During puberty, higher levels of hormones increase gum sensitivity and can cause plaque and food particles to irritate your gums more than usual, causing gums to appear swollen, red and tender. Women who are menstruating may also notice changes in their gums around the time of their period. Pregnancy affects oral health as well by increasing your risk of gum disease, which can affect the health of your baby and even lead to premature labor. Oral contraceptives can also cause swelling, bleeding and tenderness. Finally, menopause can cause women to develop a painful or burning sensation in their gums, and a salty, peppery or sour taste in their mouth. Whatever stage of life a woman is in, proper oral hygiene is of the upmost importance to preventing gum disease.

Gum Disease Treatment Methods

Dr. Kissel’s New York City & Manhattan office provides a number of treatment options for gum disease patients. With a conservative viewpoint, recommending surgery only when absolutely necessary, Dr. Kissel offers New York City & Manhattan gum disease patients with personalized solutions for their unique case, including:

  • Bite adjustment by carefully dividing bite pressure evenly across all teeth.
  • Bite splint therapy to keep teeth apart day, night or both.
  • Braces to reposition misaligned or drifted teeth.
  • Replacing worn out fillings.
  • Reconstructing badly damaged teeth.

If your gums are red, swollen and painful and you believe you have gum disease, call Dr. Kissel at (212) 702-9088 to schedule a consultation with him and come up with a personalized gum disease treatment program to save your teeth.