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Can Sleeping with Your Mouth Open Contribute to Gingivitis?

By Dave / August 28, 2007

Question:

I have no gum loss, nor bone loss as per x-rays. I just have really mad gums. However it is only my four front teeth. The rest of them are fine.

They have been this way for a long time. I live 50 miles from a periodontist. Unfortunately I think I will be getting the UGLY cleaning that I dread!!! Can they knock you out for it?

I wonder why only my front teeth are affected. My dentist told me I must sleep with my mouth open. Could that cause me to have this problem? I do not think so!

 

Answer:

Yes, sleeping with your mouth open could contribute to the problem. This would create a dry mouth and that is a good time for the bacteria. They can multiply rapidly under such a condition.

Your saliva provides a natural protection as does the mucous membranes of your mouth. When they dry out, it is much easier for the bacteria to reproduce.

If you have crowding in the front teeth, that too can also contribute to the problem. Is it the bottom four or the top four? Front or back?

Usually the back of the bottom four front teeth are a problem area. This is especially true if those teeth are not perfectly straight.

If you have no gum loss and no bone loss that is a good sign.

Yet, you definitely want to get rid of this problem before one or both of them occur.

There is a mouthwash called biotene, available at most drug stores, it is for combating dry mouth. Check with your periodontist before using it though.

Keep me posted.

– Dave

*This post is for informational purposes only. If you have or think you might have gum disease or any other oral health problem, visit your periodontist, doctor or dentist for advice, diagnosis and treatment.

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