Our teeth play a vital role in our lives. They are essential for chewing and digesting food, speaking clearly, and they give our faces shape. Our teeth can also benefit us in other ways; by giving us a full smile, they can influence our social lives, relationships, careers and improve our confidence.
Good oral health has many life-changing benefits; a healthy smile can transform your visual appearance, which can contribute to a positive mindset, but good oral health can also improve the health of our bodies as well as our mouths. This is why it’s crucial to give our mouths the best possible care and keep on top of our oral hygiene. In our guide, we will look at how you can improve and maintain your oral health and why oral hygiene is important.
Improving & Maintaining Your Mouth Health
Registering with a dentist is essential to improving and maintaining the health of your mouth. Many people think that you need to go to the dentist every six months. However, this time frame varies from person to person, and a dentist can let you know if they need to see you more often or less. If you’re looking for a dentist in Fulham, Fulham Road Dental is an excellent choice as they have state of the art equipment and many dentists that can offer a wide range of specialities or services for any problem you have with your teeth or gums. A Fulham dentist will be able to check your mouth for any issues and offer you a cleaning service to get you back on the right track if it’s been a while since your mouth was professionally cleaned.
When you’re at home, the first step to oral health is brushing your teeth. You should brush your teeth twice a day, for example, after breakfast in the morning and before you go to bed at night. It is also important to floss regularly, and your dentist will be able to advise you how often you need to floss your teeth. Finish your cleaning routine by using mouthwash for 30 seconds to ensure you are protected all day and to stave off bad breath in the morning.
Your diet can impact the health of your teeth drastically, and diets high in sugar or fat can cause tooth decay. It’s essential to keep a balanced diet of fruit, vegetables, bread, rice, potatoes and pasta, as well as including a good source of protein such as eggs, beans, meat, fish, or dairy. You don’t have to exclude sugars or fats from your diet, but keeping the amounts low will benefit not only the health of your mouth but your body as well.
If you’re a smoker or drink alcohol, these habits can also damage your teeth. Smoking is one of the leading causes of bad breath and stained teeth, but it also increases your risk of gum disease as well as many other health problems. Alcohol can erode the outer surface of the teeth, which can lead to a loss of enamel and the need for fillings. Drinking alcohol has also been linked to an increased risk of mouth cancer, which increases further when someone smokes and drinks.
Keeping Our Teeth
When we maintain proper oral hygiene by brushing our teeth twice a day, regularly visiting the dentist, and reducing the sugar in our diet, the risk of dental decay and gum disease reduces. Dental decay and gum disease can lead to tooth loss and the eventual need for dentures. Many studies have found that our teeth can represent the overall health of our bodies and how long we will live. For example, research has shown that those with 20 or more teeth at the age of 70 have a higher chance of living longer than those with less than 20 teeth. Tooth loss due to gum disease or dental decay is preventable, which is why having a good oral hygiene routine is essential for keeping our teeth throughout our lives.
The Risk Of Disease
If you develop gum disease, the bacteria in your mouth can get into the bloodstream, where it then produces a protein that causes the blood the thicken. As this happens, it can increase the risk of blood clots, and your heart is not getting the oxygen or nutrients it needs; this can result in a higher risk of having a heart attack. Gum disease can also cause inflammation of the blood vessels, which will block the blood supply to the brain and can potentially lead to a stroke. New research has now found that when we have gum disease, we are more likely to develop diabetes.
Cancer & Dementia
When we maintain good oral health and keep our mouths healthy, we reduce the risk of developing certain cancers, which women are more at risk from, as well as some forms of dementia. Studies have found that women aged between 54 and 86 with a history of gum disease were more likely to develop cancer; one in three developed breast cancer, while others were at high risk of lung, oesophageal, skin, and gall bladder cancers. People with healthy gums and no history of gum disease were 70% less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease compared to those who had suffered from gum disease over a long time.