When brushing your teeth, do you think much about your gums? The gums are a vital part of your mouth. They deserve some attention.
Gums are living tissue and act as shock absorbers and padding for the bones that hold your teeth in. Those bones are not as hard as your teeth. They can’t take the punishment your teeth can. Hard foods like nuts would wear those bones down. The gums protect those bones so they can grip firmly to your teeth and hold them in place.
Healthy gums are usually a coral pink color, though some might be darker or lighter. What you don’t want to see are puffy, red, angry gums. Such gums are being irritated by plaque build up. If it gets worse, your gums may even start to bleed. At that point, they can become sick or infected, and even pass infections on to your teeth. Unhealthy gums can’t do their job of protecting the bone that holds your teeth in place. If the bone is abused, it may start to shrink, or retreat, leaving the teeth with less and less of an anchor. This makes the teeth more likely to fall out. Keeping your gums healthy is an important part of making sure your teeth last a lifetime.
Like your teeth, your gums need a little TLC every day. When you brush properly, the bristles not only scrub your teeth but also massage the tops (or bottoms if we’re talking about your top teeth) of your gums, close to where they meet the teeth. Your gums love this massage, so it’s important you talk to a dentist for children about how to brush your teeth properly. You should also talk about the type of brush you should use. If the bristles are too hard, they could abuse rather than massage your gums. Matching the right technique with the right toothbrush will keep your gums, and your smile, bright and healthy.