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Preventing gum disease starts with preventing plaque buildup. As plaque begins to form around our teeth, the linings of our tissue can decay away leading to gingivitis. Gingivitis is a mild form of periodontal gum disease, and if left untreated, can lead to tooth loss. Gum disease is the leading form of tooth loss in adults, so we must be aware of the risk factors that can increase the likelihood of it taking hold. Here are some of the risks to watch out for:

– Chewing Tobacco: Tobacco increases the risk of gum disease.

– Diabetes: Diabetes increases the risk for many infectious diseases, including gum disease.

– Medications: Many medications produce a side effect of dry mouth symptoms. The lack of saliva in a person’s mouth makes them more susceptible to gum disease.

– Genetics: Genetics play a huge role in the development of gum disease. Genetics can make individuals up to six times more likely to have symptoms of the disease.

– Smoking: Smoking is considered by many dentists as one of the most significant risk factors for gum disease. Smoking also decreases treatment success rates.

– Hormones: As hormones change in women and young girls, it increases the chances for gingivitis to develop, which can lead to more serious types of gum disease.

– Poor Diet: Lack of proper nutrition can increase your risk of gum disease.

Although some of the risks cannot be avoided, daily prevention of plaque buildup can. If you wish to come in for an oral exam or a professional cleaning, please make an appointment with Dr. Alex S. Abernathy by contacting our fantastic dentists at Lakeland Dental Care at 601-981-8166. You can also stop by our office in Jackson, Mississippi, and let us help you achieve the perfect smile.