“Oral health” — what does that phrase mean to you? Maybe it means no new cavities at your dental checkup, or a mouth that’s free of pain or disease. To some, oral health means that their teeth work properly – good functionality with no pain. And don’t forget the value of a smile that lights up the room!
The truth is, oral health includes all of these – and more. It involves every aspect of your mouth, including the teeth, gums, tongue and everything in between. What might surprise you is how much your oral health affects your overall health and well-being.
Problems in the mouth that begin small and easily treatable can quickly become complicated, painful and expensive – and greatly affect the rest of your body. Left untreated, for example, gingivitis becomes periodontitis, a serious form of gum disease that ends up in loose teeth that eventually fall out. In turn, missing teeth result in a loss of jaw bone, which leads to poor nutrition due to the inability to chew properly. Studies also link severe gum disease to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
The moral of the story: Take care of your mouth now and avoid big problems later!
Your Role: A Daily Routine
What is involved in an effective daily routine of oral hygiene? It all begins by identifying your teeth’s biggest enemy — plaque.
Plaque is the sticky, colorless film of bacteria that forms on your teeth. The bacteria found in plaque causes big problems, so it pays (literally!) to remove it regularly. Brushing your teeth (at least) twice daily with fluoride toothpaste, combined with flossing at least once a day, greatly reduces the amount of plaque on and between your teeth.
Good nutrition and a healthy lifestyle also play a large role. You don’t have any control over hereditary factors that affect the makeup of your mouth. But you do have control over:
- How much sugar you eat (and when you eat it),
- How often you exercise,
- Whether or not you smoke,
- How regularly you see a dentist.
Taking positive steps in these areas will make the biggest difference in achieving good overall oral health.
How We Can Help
Do you usually wait until you have a major problem before seeing the dentist? Remember that the specialists at the Yuba City Dentistry Group are medical doctors whose goal is to help you prevent major problems before they occur. Through our regular exams, we clean the hard to reach deposits that surely lead to trouble if left unchecked. We also check for signs of tooth decay, various infections including gum disease, and early signals of serious diseases such as oral cancer. In addition, we’re here to answer any of your questions and give advice as needed.
So when’s the last time you had a dental visit? Call us today at (530) 671-4784 or use our website to make an appointment! We’re happy to help you take the necessary steps toward a healthy mouth – and a healthy future.