My oral hygiene has always been excellent – so how can it be that I have gum disease?


We totally understand how you feel. In fact, we meet new patients daily who often tell us the same thing. It is frustrating to be told that you have a health condition, so we are sorry you are in this situation, especially when you are obviously trying to be thorough with your home care.

The trigger for gum disease is always plaque bacteria. But it isn’t necessarily that you have “poor” hygiene to suffer with the condition.

The reason why is that plaque bacteria are sneaky, and everybody’s mouth is unique. Sometimes it gathers in between overlapping wonky teeth, under a tooth laying at an angle, and always in your gum pockets.

As your gum line does not join the tooth surface at the exact horizontal level that it might seem to, there is a healthy 2-3 millimeter ‘collar’ around every tooth. THIS is where the most destructive (and hard to reach) bugs remain.

When gum disease advances, the gum collar becomes a gum pocket, which can even be 5, 6, 7 or 10+ millimeters around every surface of every tooth. Then the condition can advance rapidly.

Sometimes, due to your own personal sensitivity to the plaque trigger, even a small amount of harmful plaque can cause this. Genetics, smoking, uncontrolled diabetes, stress, poor nutrition and so many other factors can increase your own personal sensitivity to even the smallest amount of plaque bacteria.

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