Word of Mouth, 4 tips to Spring into your Dental Health

Published On March 15, 2015 | March/April 2015

How diet, de-stressing, and one daily behavior can save your smile

John Ha, DDS

Spring is almost here! It’s always a great time to get your house tidied up, your body healthy, and your family summer-ready. While you’re at it, here are some tips to jump start your dental health for the spring!

Give Your Diet a Makeover
Acid and sugary foods have started to dominate adults’ and children’s diets. It’s well known that an excess of these foods can cause health problems related to unhealthy weight gain, gastrointestinal disturbances, and energy crashes throughout the day. Did you know that it could also lead to cavities while eroding and weakening teeth at the same time? Childhood tooth decay is one of the best indicators of tooth decay during the adult years. Changing snacks that contain less acids and sugars can help keep those cavities away and have the whole family smiling big and proud!

De-Stress Yourself
Stress is manifested in many different ways in people. The latest revised edition of the International Classification of Sleep Disorders estimates that 85-90% of the general population grind their teeth to some extent.* Of that number, approximately 25% will develop a clinical condition.* Even without symptoms, your teeth could be getting shorter. If you’ve been noticing your teeth getting shorter, ask your dentist at your next checkup to see if a night guard, or another type of oral appliance, may be beneficial for you.

One-Stop Shop for Oral and Systemic Care
Your mouth is the gateway to your body. Making sure it’s in healthy order can decrease the chances of certain chronic diseases. Within the last 10 years, many studies have begun to show an increased relationship between gum disease, coronary heart disease, and stroke. A 2011 publication states that tooth and gum infections have been found to be related to certain vascular diseases.**

Make the Most of Each Day
Each day is precious and a new adventure. You could be adding more days to your life by brushing and flossing adequately, and by seeing your dentist for regular maintenance checkups and cleanings. According to an NYU study in 2008, flossing can add up to 1.5 years to your lifespan.***Gerontologist Dr. Michael Rozien, coauthor of You – Staying Young, says that flossing twice a day can add as much as six years to your life. Make flossing a daily habit and keep gum disease, and other related diseases, at bay for a healthier life!

* International Classification of Diseases (ICD)”. World Health Organization. Retrieved 23 November 2010

** Semin Thromb Hemost 2011; 37(3): 181-192DOI: 10.1055/s-0031-1273082

*** Biesbrock et al. Assessment of Treatment Responses to Dental Flossing in Twins. Journal of Periodontology, 2006; 77 (8): 1386 DOI: 10.1902/jop.2006.050399

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