How to avoid the biggest risk factors of gum disease

Periodontal disease can come in several different forms, some of which are harder to treat than others. You’ve probably already heard of the most common form: gingivitis. There are several risk factors it’s worth keeping an eye out for – while we provide gum health treatments as one of our key dental treatments here at AP Smilecare, ideally you’ll want to catch it long before it needs expert attention. So, this week we’re highlighting some of the biggest risk factors of gum disease, so that you can keep an eye out when brushing your teeth.


Almost half of all adults in the UK show symptoms of gum disease, from bleeding and receding gums to bad breath. Gingivitis is the first stage. It begins when bacterial plaque between the gums and teeth has built up to the point that it starts producing toxins. If your gum disease remains untreated, then advanced periodontitis occurs, which is a serious gum infection that causes damage to the soft tissue. Without treatment, it can cause to tooth loss, destroying the bone that supports your teeth in the process. By making sure that you brush twice a day, for two minutes, you can make sure plague doesn’t have the chance to build up, stopping gum disease from the source.

Poor Diet and Nutrition

Diet is important when it comes to making sure your body has all the important nutrients when it comes to fighting off threats to the immune system. As periodontal disease starts as an infection in the mouth, poor nutrition can speed up the infection. To prevent this, it’s worth making sure you that have a varied diet, eating plenty of fruit and vegetables, and avoiding foods and drinks which are high in sugar. By following a healthy diet, and drinking plenty of water along with regular exercise, you can help your immune system to fight off any infections before they have chance to attack.

Healthy Food


If you’re taking any medication, it may help to check to see whether it can affect your oral health, especially anti-depressants and heart medication. Some of these side effects can reduce saliva, meaning that bacteria which would have been washed away remains on your tongue and gums for longer. If you suspect that your medication could be contributing to periodontal disease, then you can speak to one of our dentists at AP Smilecare, who will be happy to advise you on how to manage this.


Stress can be linked to an array of health conditions, and gum disease is quite a prominent one. Research shows that stress makes it difficult for the body to fight off infection. What’s more, stress can also lead to people clenching or grinding their teeth, putting excess force on the supporting tissues of the teeth, which speeds up how quickly periodontal tissue is destroyed. While it can be easier said than done, focusing on minimising your stress levels will help your overall health as well as your oral health. Try to make some time to take care of yourself every day, whether that’s sitting back in the bath, or meditating, or simply settling in with a good book.

By far the easiest way you can prevent gum disease is to brush twice a day, including before you go to sleep, and seeing your dentist regularly for check-ups. If you’ve got any questions or quick queries, feel free to give us a quick call on 01254 297 000. We can have a quick chat with you about which one of our dental treatments might be right for you, targeting your gum health and the overall state of your oral care.