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What lifestyle changes can decrease the risk of getting gum disease?

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Several health and lifestyle changes will decrease the risk, severity, and speed of gum disease development. For example:

  • Stop smoking. Tobacco use is a significant risk factor for development of periodontitis. Smokers are seven times more likely to get gum disease than nonsmokers, and smoking can lower the chances of success of some treatments.
  • Reduce stress. Stress may make it difficult for your body's immune system to fight off infection.
  • Maintain a well-balanced diet. Proper nutrition helps your immune system fight infection. Eating foods with antioxidant properties -- for example, those containing vitamin E ( vegetable oils, nuts, green leafy vegetables) and vitamin C (citrus fruits, broccoli, potatoes) -- can help your body repair damaged tissue.
  • Avoid clenching and grinding your teeth. These actions may put excess force on the supporting tissues of the teeth and could increase the rate at which these tissues are destroyed.

SOURCE: 

American Academy of Periodontology.

American Dental Association.

Reviewed by Michael Friedman on March 17, 2019

SOURCE: 

American Academy of Periodontology.

American Dental Association.

Reviewed by Michael Friedman on March 17, 2019

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