Gum Health Basics

When it comes to improving your oral health, you might think that chewing is the end of it. After all, this is all about biting down on something and grinding your teeth together, right? If only it were that simple! Yes, chewing does play an important role when it comes to oral health. However, there’s more to it than simply crunching on something for a few minutes every day. Many factors come into play about how beneficial chewing can be for your gums and teeth—and how much damage you’re doing in the process. Gum health plays a critical role in how resistant your gums are to decay and disease. Healthy gums are also essential for maintaining good tooth alignment as well as avoiding sensitive teeth and receding gums as you age. Fortunately, by learning more about gums and their role in our oral health we can take steps toward reducing the risk of developing these conditions at a later date.

1. What is Gum Health?

Gum health refers to the overall health of the gums surrounding your teeth. Like your teeth, gums are living tissues and are susceptible to damage and disease. This is particularly true for those whose gums are more susceptible to inflammation, such as people with certain types of autoimmune diseases. If your gums are unhealthy, it can lead to further problems, like tooth loss due to gum disease. That’s why it’s so important to keep them healthy! Gum health is typically measured using a simple test called the “gingival index.” This test is performed by your dentist and involves taking measurements of your gums and comparing them with healthy “control” gums.

2. Why is Gum Health Important?

Having healthy gums is essential for maintaining good oral health. Healthy gums will resist decay, have the ability to naturally repair themselves, and help keep your teeth properly aligned. This is essential for long-term oral health as well as your general health. Damaged or unhealthy gums are more susceptible to tooth decay, and research has found that people with gum disease have an increased risk of heart disease as well.

3. How Does Chewing Improve Gum Health?

As you can see, chewing can have a significant impact on gum health. But how? To understand how chewing impacts gum health, we first need to understand how our gums work. Your gums are naturally immune to bacteria and other harmful substances. However, if you have gum disease, your gums can become inflamed. Increased inflammation makes your gums more susceptible to damage, and makes it more difficult for your body to naturally repair itself. The process of chewing will stimulate saliva production. Saliva plays an important role in protecting your gums from damage as well as aiding in their self-repair. This is also where chewing with your mouth closed comes in. Chewing with your mouth closed will force you to naturally clench your jaw. This clenching motion stimulates a larger amount of saliva, which further protects and keeps your gums healthy.

4. Tips to Help Improve Your Gum Health

Brush twice a day

We all know the importance of brushing twice a day. Not only does it remove dirt and bacteria from your teeth but it also helps avoid gum disease. 

Floss regularly

While brushing is an excellent way to avoid gum disease, it is not enough. Flossing is a critical part of oral hygiene as it helps remove particles from between your teeth that brushing cannot reach. 

If you want to keep your teeth healthy, you’ve got to take care of your gums, too. Gum disease is the most common cause of tooth loss in adults, so it’s important to look after your gums, treat them gently and practice good oral hygiene. Gum health is an essential part of good oral health and is something that we should all be thinking about. By following these tips and remembering to take better care of your gums, you can avoid gum disease and keep your teeth looking healthy for years to come. 

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