If you fit in the category of most people, you have probably shared a spoon with a friend or a water bottle with a spouse or child. Maybe you have even shared a toothbrush.
This may sound like a joke, but you can get a gum disease from kissing, sharing a drink, or even sharing a utensil while letting someone try a bite of food. The latter can exchange millions of bacteria at a go, putting your oral health at risk.
How Does the Exchange Happen?
The mouth consists of bacteria that are both good and bad. The bad bacteria include the ones that are responsible for cavities and gum disease. Sharing a fork with someone that has gum disease can increase the concentration of bad bacteria in the other persons' mouth.
This can eventually lead to the development of dental problems, such as gum disease, due to the increase of the problematic bacteria in the mouth. If the victim already suffers from poor oral hygiene, the likelihood that gum disease and tooth decay will follow is high.
Periodontitis can be passed to anyone, including from a mother to child. The saliva shared is enough to transmit diseases and the bacteria that cause them. With over half of adults over the age of 30 experiencing gum diseases in the U.S. alone, it is not advisable to share your utensils with anyone.
The Good News
Unlike viruses and other types of bodily infections, a gum disease occurs differently. For gum disease to flourish, there must be both the bad bacteria and an unhygienic oral environment. In the case of children, a weak immune system can come into play. By practicing good oral hygiene and visiting us for regular teeth cleaning and checkups, you can keep gum disease at bay. Be free to contact us for more information about gum disease and how it spreads.