Good dental care and routine cleaning should be observed by adults since they are not immune to dental problems. Some of the cosmetic procedures available for adults include tooth whitening, bonding, and orthodontics. In this section, we will look at some of the common conditions in adult oral care.

Tooth Decay Prevention

Tooth decay (cavity) is caused by colonies of germs (bacteria) in our mouth that interact with carbohydrates (sugars and other foods) that we eat resulting in acid which damages the surface of the tooth, this damage or hole in the tooth we call a cavity. Cavities (dental decay) continuously progress until the cavity destroys the tooth or until the cavity is repaired (we call it restored).

Facts about dental cavities:

  • Dental decay if not treated causes damage, eventually toothaches and loss of our teeth.
  • Cavities are ugly, eventually can be painful, and if not dealt with can be very expensive to repair.
  • Dental decay can be prevented.

What can a person do to prevent cavities?

Oral Hygiene

The best way to ensure a clean and healthy smile is brushing and flossing. Food particles can accumulate on teeth and eventually turn into plaque. The bacteria that results from this accumulation can lead to gum disease, tooth decay and even loss of teeth. Fluoride also helps prevent tooth decay for adults just as it does for children. Kansas City water is treated with fluoride while Gladstone water is not. If you are cavity prone as an adult and you live in an area without the fluoride addition to the water, a fluoride paste will be helpful for you in the prevention of additional cavities.

Practicing good dental hygiene avoids unhealthy teeth and costly treatment in the long run. In addition to regular dental checkups and cleanings, diet control and fluoride treatments, children and adults should maintain a good brushing and flossing routine.

Periodontics

Gum disease or periodontal disease is an infection of the tissue that supports and holds our teeth in place. The disease causes the gum tissue to become inflamed (red, puffy, bleeding gums), and damages the bone under the gum line (bone loss).

There are some important facts that you should know:

  • A large percentage of adults show signs of periodontal (gum) disease.
  • Periodontal disease is the number one reason people in America lose their teeth.
  • In most cases, early stages of periodontal disease do not warn us; there is little or no pain, the disease runs a silent course until the disease is advanced.
  • Periodontal disease is the most common cause of bleeding gums, bad breath, and loose teeth.
  • Periodontal disease can be successfully treated and controlled.

Periodontal disease is an infection caused by germs (bacteria) but there are a number of things that can worsen the infection:

  • Smoking
  • Poor brushing technique
  • A number of health conditions including diabetes
  • Lack of professional dental care including professional cleaning of teeth by a dental hygienist

We also now know that periodontal disease can contribute to other diseases due to the fact the infected gum tissue is constantly causing bacteria to enter into our bloodstream and travel to other areas of the body.

The other diseases I refer to are:

  • Heart Disease
  • Diabetes
  • Stroke
  • Low Birth Weight Babies
  • Osteoporosis

So factually you could say if you want to live, you have to keep your teeth and gums healthy.

Dentist treat gum disease by carefully cleaning tartar (the hard deposits that build up on our teeth), and plaque (the mass of bacteria that accumulate on our teeth and at the gum line) away and training the person on techniques for daily removal of plaque.

If gum disease has reached an advanced stage where the bone around the teeth has been damaged, the dentist has other techniques to help the teeth and gums return to a healthy state.

Do yourself and your teeth a favor; avoid the fate of the more than 60,000,000 American who have lost their teeth. Get your teeth examined and cleaned and at that time we will give you a report on the health of your teeth and gums.