Thursday, August 24, 2006

Health Tip: Prevent Periodontitis

(HealthDay News) -- Periodontitis is a gum disease in which plaque, a bacteria-ridden film that covers the teeth, moves below the gum line. The bacteria cause inflammation of the gums, which ultimately causes damage to dental tissue and the bones supporting the teeth. According to the American Academy of Periodontology, this can lead to permanent damage, including tooth loss.
Regular dental cleanings, brushing, and flossing are the best ways to reduce plaque on your teeth and prevent periodontitis. Some people are genetically predisposed to periodontitis, even with proper dental care. Genetic testing can identify people at greater risk, and early preventive measures can help improve their dental health.
Some lifestyle factors can raise a person's risk of periodontitis, including smoking, stress, diabetes, and improper diet. Teeth grinding and clenching of the teeth may also promote destruction of the gums and surrounding tissues.

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