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- Poor brushing and flossing
- Clenching teeth together or grinding teeth
- Poor nutrition
- Breathing through the mouth
- HIV infection
- Improper bite
- Increased age
- Birth control pills
- Family members with gum disease
- Sex: male
- Poorly fitting dentures
- Some medications taken for high blood pressure, heart disease, and depression
- Some seizure medications
- Drinking alcohol
- Down syndrome
- Swollen, puffy gums
- Tender gums
- Redness in the gums or around the teeth
- Bleeding gums during brushing or eating
- Gum tissue that recedes or changes shape
- Persistent bad breath
- Regular dental checkups and good oral hygiene
- Careful and frequent brushing and flossing
- A healthful diet that is low in saturated fat and rich in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables
Good dental habits:
- Brushing teeth twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste. There is some data that rotating oscillating electric toothbrushes are more effective in controlling gingivitis than “normal” brushing by hand.
- Flossing at least once a day
- Visiting the dentist's office for a cleaning at least every six months
- Eating balanced, nutritious meals
- Not smoking
- Avoiding alcohol
American Academy of Periodontology http://www.perio.org
American Dental Association http://www.ada.org
Canadian Dental Association http://www.cda-adc.ca
Canadian Dental Hygienists Association http://www.cdha.ca
Academy of General Dentistry website. Available at: http://www.agd.org/support/articles/?ArtID=1250. Updated February 2007. Accessed July 27, 2011.
American Academy of Periodontology website. Available at: http://perio.org/consumer/types-gum-disease.html. Updated June 2010. Accessed July 27, 2011.
American Dental Association website. Available at: http://www.ada.org.
Gingivitis. Mayo Clinic website. Available at: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/gingivitis/DS00363. Updated November 2010. Accessed July 27, 2011.
Taking care of your gums. JAMA patient page. JAMA. 2000;284:1472.
4/7/2014 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance. http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Weyant RJ, Tracy SL, et al. Topical fluoride for caries prevention: Executive summary of the updated clinical recommendations and supporting systematic review. J Am Dent Assoc. 2013;144(11):1279-1291.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 09/2013 -
- Update Date: 00/40/2014 -