“A healthy body begins with a healthy mouth”
This month we spoke to Specialist Dental Expert Dr Reena Wadia. Dr Reena is a renowned figure of authority across the global dental industry and is the Principal Periodontist and Founder of Harley Street’s RW Perio, the leading clinic for periodontal (gum) health. Here she dishes out everything you need to know about how to best look after your gums.
Periodontal treatment refers to procedures that are carried out to help your gums stay healthy. It also covers aesthetic treatment. This means treating everything from gum disease, gum recession and cases where the exposed gumline is considered to be disproportionate resulting in a “gummy smile”.
Periodontitis (also known as gum disease or periodontal disease) is common and unpleasant. It is usually a result of poor brushing and flossing habits that allow plaque to build up on the teeth and harden.
Today there is a clear link between oral health and general health. There is evidence to suggest links between gum disease and many other inflammatory conditions such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, kidney disease and Alzheimer’s.
How to best care for your gums
The good news is that you can achieve good gum health by brushing your teeth properly.
Here are some top tips:
- Toothbrushing -Firstly, invest in an electric toothbrush. These are far more effective at removing plaque because they’re designed to gently massage teeth and gums correctly - with many now having a pressure sensor that warns you if you’re pressing too hard.
Always use a fluoride toothpaste. And don’t rinse out your mouth after using the toothpaste or it will wash away all the ‘good stuff’!
- Cleaning between your teeth – You wouldn’t wash only one side of a dirty dish, and then put it back in the cupboard to use again tomorrow, would you? When you brush your teeth, you’re only washing half of the surfaces of your teeth. This leaves the sides of your teeth and the area near the gum line dirty.
Flossing or using interdental brushes between your teeth is the way to get into these “nooks and crannies,” which need to be kept clean just as much as the rest of your teeth.
- Mouthwash – This is great as a breath freshener but remember it should be used at a different time to brushing or it will wash away all the ‘good stuff’ in the toothpaste.
- Tongue cleaning – The tongue is made up of lots of little crypts, which can harbour bacteria and debris. If these are not regularly removed, a tongue coating forms and this is one of the biggest causes of bad breath. Once you’ve got used to it, your mouth won’t feel clean without it!
Signs to look out for
The language of dentistry has changed dramatically, and today we are focusing on combining holistic health with aesthetics. During the pandemic, we particularly found an increased awareness of the importance of oral health for their general health, in addition to there being a rise in aesthetic focus.
If you are personally aware of symptoms such as bleeding gums, soreness, mobile teeth, or asymmetry on the gumline, overexposed/receding gums, it’s always worth seeking a specialist gum assessment. Remember, investing in your oral health means investing in your general health.
RW Perio is a specialist dental clinic offering exclusive periodontal treatment on a bespoke basis for every patient. Learn more about their specialist treatments by visiting: https://rwperio.com/