Q: Why is it so important to have dental cleanings & check-ups?
A: Dental Hygiene is a very important aspect of your body’s health. The health of your mouth can reveal underlying medical problems such as diabetes, heart and vascular disease, kidney disease, cancer, and other issues within the body. Many times we see the presentation of systemic disease in the oral cavity, your mouth. If you have any of the medical conditions listed above, it is even more paramount to maintain good oral health to help your body systems stay strong and healthy. When disease is present in the mouth, our immune system needs to react just as would if disease is present anywhere else in the body. Fortunately, oral health can be easily maintained with frequent brushing, flossing and regular visits to your dental health provider!
Q: I have heard a lot about my teeth and my heart. How does my oral health affect the rest of my body?
A: Oral Health including; teeth, gums, bones and muscles are all linked to overall health. Gum disease (periodontal disease) is an infection that affects your cardiovascular and immune health and has an impact on how you feel overall. Oral health also includes your “bite”. This means how your teeth come together and how facial muscles function. Tight muscles of the face and neck can lead to problems such as migraines, sinusitus, vertigo, TMD (TMJ), and sleep apnea. Our mouths often show the first signs of illness and being proactive with our oral health is a great start to a healthy body!
Q: Why is drinking water important to my teeth?
A: Water is so important this time of year and helps keeps your teeth and mouth healthy. When we’re trying to stay hydrated, pops and juices may taste good but are acidic and in excess can damage your enamel. Pops and juices are also high in sugar, so if left on the teeth and not brushed, can contribute to cavities. Diet pops may not have the sugar but will still stain your teeth. Water also helps keep your oral tissues hydrated, which contributes to healthy gums and helps prevent dry mouth. So grab your re-usable canteen, fill up & smile!
Q: Why is my Oral Health so important?
A: Oral and periodontal (gum) health is a very important aspect of overall health. Gum disease is linked to the health of your heart, lungs, digestive, and reproductive health. Gum disease is often an indicator of other systemic problems. Maintaining good oral health with regular cleanings and check-ups can also help prevent dental emergencies which can be painful and inconvenient. Taking good care of your oral health is an integral part of you total health.
Q: I brush my teeth regularly but I still have decay, what can I do to prevent further cavities?
A: Sometimes brushing is not enough, but let’s look at how long you are brushing and how thoroughly. Your brushing routine should be at least 2 minutes morning and night and include flossing. Flossing is so important for getting into all the nooks and crannies of your teeth and will help keep your gums firm as well. For children, they should also brush at least 2 minutes, twice a day & can introduce flossing by age 3 or 4. Using a sand timer is a good way for children & adults to ensure the 2 minute rule! Also important is using a fluoride toothpaste if you are prone to decay. For children, use a small pea size amount.
Keeping up a healthy mouth with regular dental check-ups and cleanings is a great way to stay on top of tooth decay.
Q: What is Preventive Dentistry?
A: Preventive dentistry includes such services as; dental cleanings, dental radiographs, check-ups, basic fillings and periodontal care. The old adage an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure
certainly holds true with our teeth and oral health!
Addressing dental issues as they arise and maintaining regular check-ups & cleanings every 6 months (or as recommended by your dental provider) can help you maintain a healthy body & mouth. No one likes surprises when it comes to our dental health, so dealing with problems when they occur prevents the problem from worsening, avoiding Major Dental deterioration, tooth loss and pain.
However it is never too late to achieve a healthy mouth! Restorative dentistry can be life changing & health enhancing. Although prevention is ideal ~ it is never too late for a beautiful smile!
Tips for Optimal Dental Health in 2011 & Beyond….
1. Brush at least 2 times a day for a minimum of 2 minutes. Be sure to brush before Bed & to not eat or drink anything but water after your nighttime brush!
2. Floss. The most overlooked aspect of dental hygiene. Flossing only takes about a minute a day and has a positive impact on preventing cavities, firming up you gums and is good for you Heart Health as well!
3. Use a fluoride toothpaste. Especially if you are prone to decay and for children to prevent childhood carries, use a pea size amount twice a day.
4. Eat Healthy foods. This is good for your body and your teeth. Avoiding sugary foods and acidic drinks, especially at night, can really help improve the health of your mouth! Acidic drinks, such as pop and juice can damage the enamel of your teeth & cause decay. Go for the water instead!
5. Have regular Cleanings & Check-ups with your dentist. Every 6 months is ideal for most people, however some patients require more frequent care if they have periodontal disease, heart disease, diabetes, are pregnant or are prone to carries and decay.