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Comments on Gum Disease from a Hygienist

Reader Comment:

Hi Dave…I just read your post and it looks great! I had to laugh when I read that you also use the Perio Aid. I love the Perio Aid, too!

How about Stimudents from Johnson and Johnson? They are a tried and true tool that have been around for probably more then 50 years. They are great for interdental stimulation and toughening of the gums. They are also a very handy tool to keep with you on the go! I always recommend keeping them in the car or pocket to have them handy. ( Forgive me if this is also a tool mentioned in one of your writings that I have not read)

For people who have not yet started with professional care Stimudents have been recommended to “test” for periodontal disease or gingivitis. When used with slight pressure between the teeth to massage the gums, if the person sees bleeding at all, there is infection and it needs to be dealt with.

If only gingivitis, it may heal with improved home care alone, but if there is deeper damage ( Periodontitis) the person really needs the professional assessment and treatment to clean out from under the gums and then all the good tools for daily home and 2-3 month professional cleanings to help keep the destruction from periodontal disease under control. As you recommended, professional treatment should always be sought.

It is better understood now that there is a relationship between gum infection and general systemic health problems, but we also comprehend much more of the two-way relationship of gum disease and risk for diabetes and pre-term low birth weight babies and for heart disease and stroke. It is very telling that some of the insurance companies will now pay for periodontal treatment for pregnant women and diabetics as they are realizing that it is more cost effective to help with the gum disease than pay for the complications that arise with systemic health issues where gum disease has been an added factor in the life time costs of caring for the complications that arise with a pre-term low birth weight baby or the health problems of the diabetic.

I hope I have not gone on and on too much on this issue, but it is a passion of mine that people understand the link and the importance of oral health. I am not a researcher or lecturer, but a clinician who loves to explain and instruct my patients in what they can do to make a difference. Hey, If they work harder, my job is easier too!!!! It makes dental cleaning visits more comfortable if patients take responsibility for their daily routine and of course, the tooth decay and other dental concerns become less and less, too. It all works together for keeping patients healthier and happier in every way. Thanks again for a forum to hear me out.

All the best and continued success in getting the word out that people can help themselves to better oral and systemic health by taking time in their own daily routine!

*Special note: if you have or think you might have gum disease or any other oral health problem, visit your periodontist or doctor for diagnosis and treatment. The USFDA has not evaluated any of the statements about products made on this site.

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