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Periodontal disease is silent – but deadly.

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Home  /  Periodontal - Dental News  /  Periodontal disease is silent – but deadly.

Bacteria love the warm, moist environment of your mouth. Here’s what you can do to make them feel less at home.

We had a lot of interest recently in our article about the rate at which bacteria multiply – and how many of them tend to live in our mouth at any given time.

We mentioned casually that in laboratory conditions, a single bacterium can double every twenty minutes. This may not sound a big deal, but let’s imagine a situation where you brush your teeth when leaving the house for work, and don’t get home to brush them again until a further twelve hours.

After the first hour, that single bacterium has grown to 8. After three hours, it’s up to 512, and an hour later, the figure is 4,096. And if you don't believe us, just do the figures for yourself. After twelve hours, the figure is astronomical – that’s the power of multiplication for you.

The reason that this should be of so much interest to you is that these demon bacteria are the root cause of gum disease – also referred to as periodontal disease. You might be inclined to suggest that tiny little organisms couldn’t possibly do damage to the hard substances that make up your teeth. And you'd be right. But instead, bacteria attack the structures that support the teeth – principally the gums.

And let’s face it, if your gums lose their structural integrity, you're soon going to lose your teeth. So hopefully this fact will make you even more determined to intensify the fight against bacteria throughout 2017 and beyond.

And the simplest way of doing this is to make sure you use anti-bacterial toothpaste and mouthwash as often as possible, making sure that those miniature wrecking balls are kept at bay. And don't assume that every oral care product has an anti-bacterial action. Many of them address other issues – such as fresh breath – so make sure you read the label and know exactly what you're buying.

If you stay on top of your dental care regime, we promise you that you're never going to fall foul of bacteria, and your gums will get the treatment that they deserve. Otherwise, you're facing a trip to the periodontist for some more hard-core periodontal treatment.

Trust us when we tell you that prevention is better than cure, so carry out the maintenance work yourself rather than letting things come to a head.

In pursuit of your quest to eliminate harmful bacteria, you should also be aware of how important flossing is in this area. Flossing doesn’t remove bacteria (they’re way too small for that), but it removes small particles of food that may have become trapped around the teeth and gums. These morsels of decaying food represent an excellent breeding ground for bacteria – and this is why we harp on so regularly about the importance of flossing.

If you would like to read up a little more on the issue of periodontal disease – and how to prevent it – then may we suggest the following article as a handy starting point –