Preventing Periodontal Disease by Avoiding Sugar
No matter how dedicated you are to your oral health, if you continue to eat a lot of sugar you may eventually develop periodontal disease. No amount of brushing and flossing or regular regularly visiting your dentist will help. It is absolutely essential that you dramatically reduce sugar if you wish to maintain your oral health and prevent the development of periodontal disease.
How Does Sugar Intake Cause Periodontal Disease?
It isn’t the actual sugar that causes periodontal disease, it is the way your body reacts that results in the development of periodontal disease. There are two types of reactions to sugar that can lead to gum disease – inflammation and acid production.
High amounts of sugar intake have been linked to severe inflammation. Inflammation of the gums or in the mouth can lead to a number of severe dental problems ranging from bad breath and gum recession to tooth loss or decreased saliva production.
Any individual is at risk of developing inflammation from eating a lot of sugar. However, there is one group of people who are extremely susceptible – diabetics. When diabetics consume large amounts of sugar it leads to the amount of glucose increasing in the body. High glucose levels can result in infections along the gums, bacteria growth, and bleeding gums.
Another bodily reaction from sugar consumption that can lead to periodontal disease is acid production. The minute you start eating anything that contains sugar, your body starts to create acid that is designed to digest the sugar. That acid not only digests the sugar in your mouth, but it can begin to erode and destroy your teeth and gums.
If you consume too much sugar over a prolonged period of time, the acid that is created will wear away at your teeth. It can also cause extreme inflammation of the gums. Too much inflammation results in the gums being unable to get proper amounts of oxygen and nourishment. Unable to get proper amounts of oxygen and nourishment will eventually lead to the death of the gums. Should too much gum tissue die, it could result in tooth loss.
What are the Symptoms of Periodontal Disease?
Most people who have periodontal disease don’t even know it. That is because most of the symptoms are so subtle that people tend to ignore them. However, in severe cases of periodontal disease, symptoms are noticeable.
Some of the symptoms that are associated with periodontal disease include:
- Puffy, swollen or bright red gums
- Bad breath that is persistent
- Receding gums
- Bleeding gums that occur when brushing or flossing
- Bleeding gums that happen when eating
- Noticeable shifting and moving of teeth
- Pus or abscesses that have developed along the line of the gums
Ways to Cut Back on Sugar
You don’t have to completely eliminate sugar from your diet. You just need to eat it in moderation.
Some easy-to-follow suggestions for how to cut back or avoid sugar include:
- Drinking water or milk instead of soda, coffee drinks, or juices
- Eating healthy snacks instead of choosing cakes, cupcakes and other snacks filled with sugar
- Looking for hidden sources of sugar, such as processed food, and avoiding those when possible
- Looking at the ingredients in dressings and other sauces to verify they are low in sugar
Failure to Treat Periodontal Disease Could Lead the Need for Oral Surgery
Periodontal disease is easy to treat in the early stages. However, if left untreated for prolonged periods of time it could result in extensive tooth loss or the loss of bone structure in the jaw. When this happens, the only way to improve your oral health is with the help of an oral surgeon like Dr. Sedaros.
Dr. Sedaros is an oral surgeon who practices in Melbourne, Florida. He is extremely experienced in performing dental implants and bone grafts. Both of these procedures may be needed if you had periodontal disease and it was untreated for a number of years.
If you have had periodontal disease and it was left untreated for a while, schedule an appointment with Dr. Sedaros. He can conduct a complete exam and determine whether or not you may need a bone graft or dental implant to improve your oral health. Call his office today to schedule an appointment.