Gum disease occurs when tissues that support your teeth become inflamed from bacterial secretions along the gum line. This can lead to bone and tooth loss.
The American Dental Association says risk factors for gum disease include:
- Taking improper care of the teeth and mouth.
- Chewing tobacco or smoking it.
- Being genetically predisposed to gum disease.
- Having teeth that are misaligned and more difficult to clean.
- Being pregnant or diabetic.
- Taking medication such as some types of oral contraceptives, calcium channel blockers, steroids, cancer medications or anti-epilepsy drugs.