Periodontal Disease: Why Me?

womanwonderingbrunetteWe often find that patients ask us not solely why they have developed periodontal disease – but why they have but their spouse has not. Let’s examine this idea. First, if you and your spouse have drastically different oral health habits – perhaps he flosses but you don’t – this might account for the distinction. But what if you are both dedicated to prevention and generally follow our smile guidelines? Allow us to help you understand why some patients end up with gum inflammation, while others do not.

The Little Things

Sure, you and your spouse both brush your teeth twice a day, floss at least once a day, and you come in at the same time to receive your dental cleaning and checkup. So, what could possibly be different? You may not notice but it’s often the little things that result in plaque accumulation, tartar, and periodontal disease. Consider the following:

  • You need to brush for at least two minutes every time – perhaps you are rushing
  • It’s important to use gentle pressure and a soft-bristle toothbrush to avoid damage, while enjoying effective results
  • You need to focus while you brush or you may miss several spots – even if the session lasts two full minutes
  • It’s important that you curve your floss as you drag it along your tooth, so it is pressed firmly against tooth tissue

The Unexpected Things

This might make you feel a bit better. In some instances, outside factors that are not directly related to your dental hygiene can increase your likelihood of developing periodontal disease. Changes in your hormones can lead to it, pregnancy can become a factor, your age and even your gender may play a role, and your genetic makeup influences your gum health.