RECENT STUDIES ESTIMATE about half of all adults have some form of gum disease. Shocking, isn’t it?
One reason the spread of periodontal conditions is so common is because gum problems progress slowly and often painlessly. In many cases, dental neglect and skipping regular checkups allows periodontal disease to seriously damage gums and even underlying bone structure before action is taken!
When bone structure is weakened, teeth can begin to drift out of place. Normally, when teeth need to be aligned, orthodontic treatment including braces or retainers can do the job. But when gums are infected, things become more complicated.
Periodontal Disease Can Delay Orthodontic Treatment
Attempting orthodontic treatment on a mouth affected by periodontal disease can invite even more problems. The pressure of braces on already weak bone structure can cause teeth to move unpredictably and cause further damage.
The first order of business should be getting periodontal disease under control. Once gums are healthy enough to provide the needed support for orthodontic treatment, gaps can be closed and teeth can be straightened.
Expert Diagnosis is Key
In general, periodontal disease should be addressed before moving any teeth. However, in some cases, applying orthodontic treatment sooner can help to alleviate gum problems!
Each individual situation is different, and by getting to know your unique dental profile, we can develop the optimal treatment plan for you. Information provided by your general dentist also helps us decide the best way to proceed.
Take Care of Your Gums, With Braces or Not
Even if you’re not planning on getting braces anytime soon, caring for your gums is crucial for oral health—and total-body health! Healthy gums are linked to lower risk of chronic conditions like heart disease, arthritis, and diabetes.
We view orthodontics as an essential part of your overall well-being. Along with treatment, our goal is to help you establish dental habits that will not only benefit your smile, but your total health and quality of life!
Thanks for being our valued and patient and friend! We invite you to talk with us on your next visit if you have any questions.
(Image by Flickr user Nicolas Henderson used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.)