by Don Mums
Preventing dental problems before they have a chance to get started is the simplest and most cost-effective approach to oral health. To begin with, it’s important to understand that a healthy mouth helps ensure a healthy body, and that problems with your teeth and gums can create other health problems. In fact research confirms that there is a definite link between oral health problems and larger health issues like diabetes, cardiovascular issues, respiratory problems and even pre-term, low birth-weight pregnancies.
When a problem is allowed to begin in your tooth or gum tissue–if left unchecked–it can develop into an infection, and anytime an infection begins anywhere in your body, it produces proteins called C-Reactive Protein (CRP) which irritate the walls of the blood vessels ultimately narrowing the arteries. The tricky thing about problems or infections in the mouth is that there often are no symptoms until destruction has already occurred. That’s why it is so important to be proactive when it comes to your oral health.
While brushing and flossing on a daily basis are important for taking care of your teeth and gums, preventative dental care goes beyond these basics. Since dentistry is about the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of issues and problems associated with the mouth or more specifically the teeth, gums and jaw bone, working closely with a dentist who will monitor your oral health is a large part of being proactive in regards to your oral health. In fact, when it comes to issues with your gums where a variety of infections can begin, only a dentist has the ability to diagnose a possible problem before it becomes an issue. A dentist can also find a cavity when it is still small, which means they can repair it before a tooth has been weakened and destroyed. And if tartar develops below the gum line, only a cleaning by a dental professional using specialized tools can remove this substance that if not removed will lead to irritations and infections.
Along with developing a good relationship with a dentist, creating and maintaining good overall health habits are also a proactive measure to take when it comes to dental care. Sugary snacks are extremely destructive for your teeth, since the bacteria in plaque combined with sugar from the foods you eat creates an acid that destroys the enamel on your teeth, and this destruction will continue for up to twenty minutes after the sugar has been consumed. The best way to prevent this is to either only eat sugary treats with your meals because when combined with other foods, the sugar is carried into your digestive system instead of clinging to your teeth where it becomes an invitation for tooth decay, or stay away from sugary foods all together or carry a toothbrush with you and brush right after eating your sugary snack.
Being proactive with your health, whether it’s your overall health or your dental health, is a good way to ensure that problems won’t develop, or if they do, you’ll have a chance of catching them early enough that they will be a small issue instead of a large problem.