Since I was young at around 1 years old, I have enjoyed drinking tea. As an adult I still tend to have a few cups per day. This factor has stained my teeth overtime and combined with other issues such as overcrowding in the mouth, not brushing efficiently, not visiting the dentist enough, not seeing a hygienist, and not flossing with dental brushes. This has left me with gum disease.
What happened to me is that plaque built up on my teeth and caused staining. Despite brushing my teeth twice per day, this plaque wasn’t removed in all areas, especially in between the teeth where old food can get stuck. The plaque developed into tartar forming along the gum line, the tartar calcified and caused the gum to recede resulting in gum disease.
Unaware that it was the start of gum disease, I noticed the orange tartar in my mouth started to turn a white colour. I decided at that point to buy an expensive electric toothbrush to clean my teeth better than the manual brush as I had heard a lot about electric toothbrushes being superior.
Manual toothbrush vs electric
Although it did clean my teeth better than a manual brush, that alone was not enough to get rid of the tartar build up or to remove the staining. I tried the best toothpastes on the market and that was also not enough. I avoided going to the dentist over the years partly due to a fear of pain but also because of laziness. One day the white tartar flaked off, it was like a piece of grit in my mouth and as it came off I noticed that my gum was no longer behind it.
This is when the worry set in and I thought enough is enough, I have to go to the dentist but before I did, I self diagnosed online with gum disease and decided to try Corsodyl simply because it is marketed towards preventing gum disease. I tried it for one week and nothing changed, and so I booked an emergency dentist appointment.
The checkup cost me £30 and lasted 2 minutes, she told me “You have gum disease” then she took a tool and scraped a piece of tar tar off and warned me that if I do not look after my teeth and visit the hygienist often that my gums will recede more and that everything will get worse. I told her that I had been using Corsodyl and she said that it prevents gum disease, it doesn’t treat it. She booked a hygienist appointment for a week later and told me in the meantime to get dental brushes to clean in-between my teeth.
Full of worry, I did exactly that. I had no idea how to use the dental brushes as it was my first time. I pushed them through each tooth and the pain was excruciating. There was so much blood and after I went through each tooth, the brush was bending, the wire was digging into my gum and pieces of built up tar tar grit was coming out of my mouth. I felt so silly and ashamed at myself for letting my teeth get in this condition at only age 25.
When I went back for my hygienist appointment, she took a look at my teeth again and said that I had done a really good job cleaning them. I took my toothbrush along with me and she told me how to brush well to avoid it building again in the future and warned that as I have overcrowding in my mouth where my teeth are not completely straight, this causes a food trap that makes it difficult to clean everywhere. Whilst there is no treatment for gum disease and the damage is irreversible there are still some things that you can do. A gum graft is an option where the dentist would cut gum from somewhere else in the mouth and will put it by the tooth to replace the missing gum.
If I was to go through with this, she warned that I would have to keep great oral health for at least 6 months to avoid infection. This is something that I am going to consider in the future depending on the price. She started cleaning my teeth and as I laid back on the chair with my eyes closed I tried to not think about the huge pain as she scraped around each tooth one by one. As my mouth filled up with saliva and I swallowed the tool kept cutting the side of my mouth accidentally because I was moving. Afterwards my teeth looks so much better but the missing gum was more noticeable and my teeth felt horrible to touch with my tongue. They felt sharp and uncomfortable for weeks after. Using the dental brushes became easier and in my next appointment I am going to be having X-rays done to check the health of my teeth from the inside.
I am also in the midst of debating whether to have Invisalign to straighten my teeth to combat the overcrowding problem, especially considering that I am always in front of the camera making videos and my smile is important to me. In the coming months I will keep you updated on this page of any changes and soon I will be adding some before and after photos so check back frequently.
My experience with gum disease (video)
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