Gum disease is a more serious concern than "cavities" because of one important difference. You are not likely to lose your teeth to decay but you will lose them to gum disease.
Unlike decay, where part of the tooth is lost but can be replaced, with gum disease the bone that holds the teeth in is lost and is gone for good. If you let decay go too long you might need more than just a filling, but you can still keep the tooth. If you let gum disease go too long you will lose your teeth.
Again unlike decay, where you'll know there is a problem (you'll see a hole, feel a sharp edge, the tooth will get sore, there will be some sign that something is wrong), you may not be aware that you have gum disease until a tooth gets loose and falls out, without ever being painful. It will seem like a new problem but, in fact, it will be a very old problem that is being discovered too late.
The whole process starts with a soft build-up that forms on the teeth every day no matter what you do. If the soft build-up is not flossed and brushed away it hardens and has to be removed in the dental office. To prevent tooth loss the hard build-up must be removed before the gum disease process has a chance to start.
Gum disease affects the reason and timing for check-ups and cleanings. Professional cleanings every six months are not for everyone. Six months is, however, a good evaluation period. If, in six months there is a lot of hard build-up you need to be seen more often. If there is no build-up you may be able to go longer between appointments. The more effectively you floss and brush at home the less often you will need your teeth cleaned in the dental office.
At your convenience, let’s meet and discuss treating your gum disease and maintaining your lifelong dental health.