Recent research has indicated there may be a link between oral health and systemic health. While one may not directly cause the other, having gum disease can increase your risk for conditions like diabetes and heart disease, and vice versa. Gum disease starts with mild symptoms that frequently go unnoticed like inflamed or bleeding gums in Leesburg, VA, but can progress into a more serious condition, if not treated by your periodontist. To help reduce your risk for gum disease, practice these five steps to maintain great oral health:


1. Eat right. Consuming a well-balanced diet full of dark, leafy greens, fruits, vegetables, dairy products, nuts, eggs, and lean means is great for both your oral and overall health. Vegetables like celery can act like natural dental floss and the casein protein found in milk can help prevent cavities.


2. Stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of water can both help with dry mouth and wash away trapped, bacteria-causing food particles. Tap water that contains fluoride also acts as a cavity fighter.


3. Avoid Sugars. Eating foods high in sugar can erode your teeth and wear away at the protective enamel. Similarly, drinking sugary liquids like soda or juice lets unwanted sugar settle and buildup in your mouth.


4. Keep a routine. Gently brushing with fluoride toothpaste for at least two minutes twice a day helps to remove plaque that has collected during the day. Floss once a day to clean the areas between your teeth your toothbrush will miss.


5. Visit often. Deep cleanings should be scheduled every six months to ensure your oral health is in excellent condition. This is especially important if you are noticing symptoms of gum disease like swollen, sensitive, or bleeding gums in Leesburg, VA.


Dr. Jean-Claude Kharmouche can provide you with a comprehensive exam and begin proper treatment if you have gum disease. Call our office to make an appointment with our periodontist!