Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Preventing Gum Disease Is Important for Overall Health

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Preventing Gum Disease Is Important for Overall Health

Article excerpt

Dear Doctor K: My dentist is always going on about gum disease.

Is it really a big deal? If so, what should I do to prevent it?

Dear Reader: I understand your skepticism.

It seems hard to believe that your gums could cause serious problems.

The kidneys, the liver, the heart, the brain -- of course. But the gums?

Yes, the gums: Your dentist is right.

Periodontal disease, also known as periodontitis and gum disease, is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults.

Our mouths house complex networks of bacteria.

When all of the species are in balance, our gums are protected from disease-causing bacteria.

Disturbing this balance provides an opening for disease-causing bacteria to cause inflammation of the gums, and that destroys gum tissue. …

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