“Oral health” — what does that term mean to you? Perhaps it means no new cavities at your dental visit or a mouth absent of pain. To others, oral health means that their teeth work properly — good function with no tenderness. And don’t forget a favorite test of oral health — a smile that lights up the room!
The reality is, oral health incorporates all of these — and more. It incorporates every aspect of your mouth, including the teeth, gums, tongue and everything in between. What might startle you is how much effect your oral health has on your overall health.
Illnesses in the mouth that start small can quickly become troublesome, annoying and expensive — greatly affecting the rest of the body. Left untouched, for example, gingivitis becomes periodontitis, a serious form of gum inflammation that ends up in loose teeth that almost always fall out. In turn, missing teeth result in a loss of bone and poor nutrition due to the inability to chew properly. Dentists even link severe gum inflammation to an increased risk of heart disease.
The moral of the story: take care of your oral well being now and avoid big complications later!
Your Role: A Regular Program
What is an effective program of home oral hygiene? It all begins by eradicating your teeth’s largest enemy: plaque.
Plaque is the sticky, colorless film of bacterial organisms that forms on your teeth. The bacteria found in plaque can lead to big complications, so it pays to get rid of it regularly. Brushing your mouth (at least) twice every day with fluoride toothpaste, combined with flossing at least once every day, greatly reduces the quantity of plaque on your teeth.
Healthy food and a healthy lifestyle also play a large role. You don’t have any say over genetic factors that affect the physiology of your mouth. But you do have say over:
- How much sugar you consume (and when you consume it);
- The kinds of foods in your diet (for example, eating hard foods like apples and carrots increases bone density);
- How regularly you exercise;
- Whether or not you smoke;
- How often you see our Auburn dentists.
Taking positive measures in these areas makes the biggest difference in achieving good overall oral health.
How Our Dentist Can Help
Do you usually wait until you undergo a dental trauma before calling your Auburn dentist? Remember that the dentist at the office of Rock Creek Dental is a trained doctor whose goal is to help you prevent huge complications before they occur.
Through our regular examinations, we clean the hard to reach plaque deposits that lead to cavities if left unchecked. Our professionals also check for indications of tooth decay, various infections — including gingivitis — and early indications of serious illnesses such as oral cancer. In addition, we’re available to answer all of your questions and give advice as needed.
So when’s the last time you had a dental appointment? Call us today! We’re happy to help you take the needed steps for a healthy mouth — and a healthy future. In the meantime, visit our Oral Health section for more recommendations about your own personal routine for keeping your mouth healthy.