Are your gums sore or bleeding? Do you have crooked teeth and terrible breath? You could have periodontitis, a severe form of gum disease. You may have wondered, can periodontal disease be cured?
What is periodontitis?
Gingivitis is the early stage of gum disease in which harmful bacteria in the mouth produce gum inflammation. If left untreated, this progresses to periodontitis, a kind of gum disease that causes receding gums and affects the teeth and jaw. If periodontitis becomes aggressive or chronic, it can lead to tooth loss as well as bone and gum tissue deterioration. Because the risks of surgery are considerable for most severe forms of periodontal disease, early treatment is crucial for excellent dental health.
What causes periodontitis?
Your mouth bacteria are part of a collection of germs, including bacteria, viruses, and fungi, known as the oral microbiome. The oral microbiome in healthy people is generally in balance, with beneficial bacteria that can aid in infection prevention and immune system training. However, the oral microbiome can become imbalanced, which is referred to as oral microbiome dysbiosis.
Oral dysbiosis occurs when bad bacteria in your mouth outcompete healthy bacteria for resources, allowing them to penetrate your tissues and cause disease. Oral microbiome dysbiosis can also lead to other oral and dental health issues, such as tooth decay and oral thrush.
Most of these harmful bacteria are anaerobic, which means they survive in the absence of oxygen, allowing them to thrive in the crevices of your gums beneath your teeth. Bacterial growth in the pockets, also known as biofilm or dental plaque, creates a habitat for them.
As the bacteria penetrate further into these pockets, mechanical methods of oral care such as brushing and flossing become ineffective because they are unable to reach those spots to eliminate plaque buildup and biofilm.
If left untreated, the pockets deepen as bacteria cause additional tissue damage, leading to periodontal disease, which is permanent damage to your gums and teeth. It can even harm your jaw bone, which is necessary for tooth stability.
People who have other health problems, such as diabetes, are more likely to develop periodontal disease.
What are symptoms of periodontitis?
- Gum disease
- Loose teeth
- Gum recession
- Sore gums
- Tooth pain
- Jaw pain
- Bad breath
Is periodontal disease curable?
Periodontal disease cannot be cured. Gum disease in its early form of gingivitis can be cured, but periodontitis cannot because bacteria have already caused bone damage that cannot be restored. However, periodontal disease can be managed with the right oral care routine, and by maintaining a healthy oral microbiome.
How can you maintain a healthy oral microbiome with periodontal disease?
Periodontal disease symptoms can be alleviated, and disease can be prevented from progressing and worsening. Here are some natural methods for treating periodontal disease symptoms at home:
- Consume More Vitamin C Rich Foods. Vitamin C has been shown to increase collagen formation, which helps to keep gums firm and avoids bleeding. Vitamin C also improves immunological function, making it easier to battle infections. According to research, a diet high in vitamin C was good at improving symptoms of periodontal disease.
- Consume more nitrate-containing foods, such as leafy greens and beets. Nitrate is a substance that, when used as a prebiotic, can improve oral health. Nitrate can reduce anaerobic bacteria abundance and raise levels of good bacteria that can help prevent gum disease. Most healthy diets that are high in fiber also contain nitrate.
- Increased levels of omega-3 fatty acids. Oral health specific meals have been clinically proven to improve bleeding and pocket depth in persons with gum disease. These diets are frequently high in omega-3 fatty acids. These omega-3 fatty acids can help to decrease inflammation and promote gum healing.
- Drink a lot of water. Keeping hydrated might help with saliva flow. Saliva is a vital aspect in oral health because it contains proteins and chemicals that protect your teeth and gums.
- Use a waterflosser with low hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide is a potent and naturally occurring chemical that, upon contact, kills anaerobic microorganisms. Waterflossing permits hydrogen peroxide to penetrate deep into pockets and hit difficult-to-reach areas. Flossing in general reduces the abundance of harmful bacteria.
- Avoid smoking. Tobacco use raises the risk of periodontal disease. Smoking also affects your immune system, making you more susceptible to infection.
- Consume an oral probiotic. Dental and oral probiotics comprising Lactobacillus reuteri and Streptococcus salivarius have been demonstrated to protect your mouth from dangerous bacteria that cause gum disease. More information can be found in this guide to dental probiotics.
- Use mouthwash with chlorine dioxide or hydrogen peroxide. These two compounds are disinfectants capable of killing the microorganisms responsible for periodontal disease. You can avoid gum recession and save your teeth by minimizing the quantity of bacteria that cause gum disease!
- Use an essential oil-infused mouthwash. Some essential oils have been demonstrated to promote dental health and eliminate dangerous microorganisms. More information can be found in our essential oil guide.
- Avoid using mouthwash containing alcohol. Alcohol can dry up the mouth and limit saliva production. Furthermore, alcohol-based mouthwash might destroy the healthy bacteria in your mouth that protect you from harmful bacteria.
- Chew some gum. Gum has the ability to increase saliva production. Saliva is necessary for the health of the gums and teeth.
- Bristle can be used to test your oral microbiome. You can evaluate whether you are on the right track or if you need to improve in lowering inflammation-causing bacteria by measuring and testing your oral microbiome. A simple spit test can give you with the information you need to keep periodontal disease in check, and prevent it from worsening.