Research has linked gum disease to heart disease. This is a classic example of a common ailment leading to something more serious if left unchecked. Because gum disease is painless it is hard to detect and can be lived with for years. Signs are bleeding gums after brushing. Ask your dentist to hold a mirror so you can see the disease. The gum tissue becomes discoloured and the sight of that is a call to action.
How can essential oils help? Control bacterial growth is ideally suited to certain essential oils. However all essential oils are irritant to the mucous membranes and must be diluted.
Here is a formula from Valerie Ann Wormwood's really useful book 'The Fragrant Pharmacy' p172
"myrhh has been used for treating mouth problems for a very long time indeed. it is marvellous for keeping gums healthy and treating those that are not. A mouthwash can be made by adding two drops of essential oil of myrhh to one tablespoon of vodka and mixing well. Add only two drops of this to each glass of water you use to rinse your mouth."
Vodka is used because oil and water do not mix and this aids dilution and so avoids irritating the mucous membranes. Note the small dose. Regular routine use is of more value than a large dose which is of no value at all as the bacteria will only come back.
Your dental hygienist can help.
Treatments for gum disease that don't involve surgery include:
Professional dental cleaning. During a typical check-up your dentist or dental hygienist will remove the plaque and tartar (plaque that builds up and hardens on the tooth surface and can only be removed with professional cleaning) from above and below the gum line of all your teeth. If you have some signs of gum disease, your dentist may recommend professional dental cleaning more than twice a year.
Scaling and root planing. This is a deep-cleaning, non-surgical procedure, done under a local anaesthetic, whereby plaque and tartar from above and below the gum line are removed.