Dental health is an important contributor to a healthy body overall. A consistent oral regimen and a well balanced diet are the most important attributes to keeping a healthy body. Since your body reacts to what you put into it and how you treat it, everyone should be mindful of how their body responds.
Proper dental health is more than just brushing and flossing. The substances you use, the food you eat, and the beverages you drink all affect your dental and overall health.
Poor Dental Health Habits
A poor diet can lead to poor dental health, so be sure to track the food and drinks you put into your body. Habits like drinking and using tobacco can deteriorate the health of your mouth and body, so be sure to limit consumption so you don’t put your dental health at risk.
Read up below on things to avoid in order to maintain a healthy body and mouth.
Tobacco use is one of the worst things you can do to your mouth. Not only is the substance extremely addictive, but it can also lead to a number of health problems over time.
- Smokeless Tobacco: As one of the biggest causes of oral cancer, individuals who use smokeless tobacco are fifty times more likely to develop cancers of the cheek, gums, and lining of the lips.
- Tobacco Smoke (Cigarette, Cigar, Pipe): If someone has been smoking for a number of years, they could be at increased risk for mouth cancer. Tobacco smokers are six times more likely than nonsmokers to develop oral cancer, with the risk rising with duration and frequency of use.
Some other side effects of using tobacco include bad breath, stained teeth, and gum disease. The most effective way to reduce the risk of these side effects is to reduce or refrain from chewing or smoking tobacco.
Alcohol consumption is also a contributor to poor dental health. While moderate and responsible consumption of alcohol doesn’t directly relate to oral cancer, excessive alcohol consumption can be traced to oral cancer. Heavy drinkers are six times more likely to be diagnosed with mouth cancer than non-drinkers, so it’s important to be mindful of alcohol intake in order to maintain a healthy mouth.
Most alcohol has a high sugar content as well, which can increase the individual’s risk of tooth decay. Over-consumption can also cause dehydration, so limiting consumption of alcohol is an effective measure in maintaining proper oral and overall health.
Good Dental Health Habits
While avoiding the attributes of poor oral health is important, it’s also crucial to form habits that will positively impact your dental and overall health.
A consistent brushing routine is crucial in protecting your oral health and your gums from disease. Brushing a minimum of twice a day is a good start, but after every meal could be more beneficial, as bacteria tends to build after eating. Colgate states that certain foods and drinks especially those high in carbs and sugars promote the growth of bacteria in your mouth. This bacteria attacks your tooth enamel for at least twenty minutes after you eat a meal or snack.
While brushing your teeth after consuming carbohydrates and sugar is recommended, brushing immediately after eating anything acidic could be counterproductive. Food containing citric acid like oranges, grapefruits and lemons, weaken tooth enamel, so brushing immediately after eating these foods can damage the enamel in its weakened state. We recommend waiting at least thirty minutes before brushing after the consumption of these foods.
Additionally, we recommend brushing before eating acidic foods and drinking a glass of water after you are finished to wash away the acids.
Keeping up with a consistent flossing regimen is also extremely important in maintaining exceptional oral hygiene. Flossing gets the tough-to-reach spots that brushing cannot get to. To ensure your gums are healthy and strong, we recommend flossing at least once a day for starters. Flossing gently after every meal can also be beneficial in minimizing bacteria buildup.
Flossing also slows tooth decay and gum disease, so consistently flossing will ensure that your gums and natural teeth are in top notch form.
Regular Dental Appointments
Regular dental appointments are crucial in ensuring your teeth and gums are healthy and strong. While the aforementioned dental care habits will help with your overall oral care, forming a dental checkup routine can work to confirm everything is running smoothly. These visits will allow your dentist to notice any problems that may arise due to poor or inconsistent oral care.
Catching an issue as soon as possible is important, as your dentist will be be able to either correct the problem or recommend a solution for you to explore at home.
How We Can Help
At Smile Design Specialist, we are here to help with any dental health concerns you may have. If you or a loved one has neglected oral care, contact us to schedule an appointment right away. Neglecting your oral health can lead to serious complications to your overall health, so please be sure to prioritize your dental care.