If your gums are mildly swollen and red, flossing every day and brushing your teeth in the morning and before bedtime can help reverse these symptoms of gum disease. For more information on how to care for your teeth, see:
The following steps can also help to reverse or prevent gum disease:
- Use a tartar-control toothpaste that contains Reference fluoride Opens New Window.
- Use an antiseptic mouthwash, such as Listerine, or an antiplaque mouthwash.
- Chew sugar-free gum after meals if you are unable to brush your teeth.
- Carefully use a toothpick after meals if you are unable to brush your teeth right away.
If you smoke or use spit tobacco, the best thing you can do for yourself is to quit. Tobacco decreases your ability to fight infection and delays healing. Tobacco users are more likely than nonsmokers to have serious gum disease that leads to tooth loss and that doesn't respond as well to treatment.Reference 5 Quitting is difficult. But many people find success through a combination of medicine, a stop-smoking program, and counseling. For more information on how to quit, see the topic Reference Quitting Smoking.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference August 5, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Reference Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Reference Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Reference Steven K. Patterson, BS, DDS, MPH - Dentistry