The term “cosmetic” causes many people to brush off the idea of visiting a cosmetic dentist to fix serious oral health problems. Oftentimes, this is the result of major misconceptions about possible treatments and the feeling that procedures are purely about fixing appearance. However, this form of dentistry usually goes far beyond aesthetic appeal. It…
How a Cosmetic Dentist Help Your Gums
Aesthetic improvements to a smile are just one of the reasons to schedule an appointment with a cosmetic dentist. Many people choose to visit these types of dental health professionals to enhance their teeth through a variety of treatments, such as whitening procedures, veneers, or dental onlays. While these can help your smile look whiter, brighter, and more appealing, many options can also help to strengthen and protect both the soft tissues of the mouth.
Through treatments, cosmetic dentists can improve overall gum health and strength. Healthy gums have a significant impact on the ability to eat and speak, as tooth health is impacted by the gums. Not all cosmetic dentistry treatments address gum health, so it is important to work with a provider to know which options would be effective.
Factors impacting gum health
Periodontal disease is a serious oral health concern. This condition is an infection of the gums that can damage soft tissue and create bone loss in the jaw. Advanced stages of gum disease can lead to tooth loss. Though it is a common oral health condition, it is generally preventable. Gum health is impacted by several factors, several of which are created by poor dental hygiene practices:
- Excessive buildup of plaque and tartar
- Development of gingivitis
- Use of tobacco products or recreational drugs
- Use of certain medication
- Genetic makeup
- Certain diseases or medical conditions
Poor nutrition can also contribute to an increased risk of periodontitis, as can obesity or hormonal changes. The more severe the condition, the greater the damage done to gums, teeth, and surrounding jawbone. Unfortunately, gum disease can lead to further risks of coronary artery disease, rheumatoid arthritis, respiratory disease, and blood sugar instability.
Treatments from a cosmetic dentist
The damage done to the gums or the loss of teeth from problems with periodontitis can be addressed through cosmetic dentistry treatments. In addition to these treatments, a dentist will make several recommendations on how to improve oral hygiene and what kind of follow-up care may be needed to sustain the restoration.
Soft tissue grafting
Gum recession, or a loss of gum tissue near the gumline, increases a person’s risk of developing serious dental problems. When the gum tissue is missing from around the roots of the teeth, it can lead to advanced discoloration, tooth decay, and jawbone loss. With grafting, the missing gum tissue is replaced, bringing protection and a healthy appearance back to the gums.
While many would consider dental implants a way to restore lost teeth, implants have a positive impact on the gums. Tooth roots act as a stimulant to the jawbone, preserving the bone through the routine stimulus and pressure achieved through chewing. When tooth loss occurs, this stimulation is lost, and bone can become reabsorbed into the body. Implants replace the roots of the lost teeth, preserving both facial appearance and the jawbone.
While it is a treatment to address a tooth structure that has been damaged, the protective covering of a crown can prevent further tooth decay from occurring. This protection reduces the ability for bacteria and irritants to continue destroying the tooth and moving toward the gum.
If you have a "gummy smile" there may be an excessive amount of gum tissue surrounding your teeth. In many situations, this is not a health concern, but it can have a negative impact on your self-esteem and your confidence in your smile. A cosmetic dentist can use dental lasers or tools to carefully remove the excess gum tissue, resulting in a more beautiful smile.
Periodontal health plays an important role in dental and overall wellness. It is essential to maintain sound oral hygiene and to see a dentist at least twice a year for cleanings to prevent gum disease and other periodontal issues. This is especially true for those who are more at risk for such problems. Taking proper care of your gums can also reduce your risks of developing other serious health conditions in the future.
For both oral health concerns and cosmetic issues that involve the gums, an appointment with a cosmetic dentist can bring some answers. Several treatments can restore health and function to this part of the mouth. Talk with a professional to determine which procedures are right for you. With the help and guidance of a cosmetic dentist, you can enjoy stronger and more beautiful teeth and gums.
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