A happy smile is a healthy smile! There are a number of steps you can take to keep your smile healthy by reducing your risk of developing tooth decay. Here are a few suggestions from our team.
Eat a Tooth Friendly Diet
Reduce the amount of sugars and
carbohydrates in your diet. Decay-causing bacteria in the mouth feed on these
We suggest you reduce grains, beans,
seeds, and nuts in your diet when possible. These foods can lead to
demineralization of your teeth and bones due to their acidic content. Consider adding
foods high in minerals and vitamins to your diet such as apples, leafy greens,
celery, or carrots.
Brush, Floss, Rinse, Repeat
Routine brushing at least twice a day
followed by flossing and a mouth rinse is the optimal at home dental care
routine. Brush for at least two minutes in the morning and at night. Use a soft
bristle toothbrush that is small enough to reach every tooth.
Children often get dental sealants to
protect the hard-to-reach teeth in the back of their mouths. However, dental
sealants can benefit adults and those who have a higher risk of decay. Dental
sealants are a layer of plastic-like material that coats the top surface of the
tooth. Sealants protect the crevices in the tooth where bacteria reside and
minimizes exposure of the tooth to harmful acids and sugars that wear down
When left untreated, tooth decay can cause
discomfort and spread to other healthy teeth. You can combat tooth decay by
reducing sugars and acids in your diet and brushing and flossing regularly. For
some patients, dental sealants might be a solution.
Don’t forget to schedule your next visit to our office. Our team can provide a professional cleaning and check for signs of tooth decay.
There are over 12 million new cases of cancer diagnosed each year. There are a large variety of different kinds of cancer, some of which are more preventable than others. It might seem obvious that brushing and flossing each day as well as avoiding tobacco can help protect you from oral cancer. However, there are types of oral cancer and other cancers that can be prevented through optimal oral care as well.
Dental Care and Oral
While it’s long been known that tobacco and heavy alcohol
use are the main causes of oral, head, and neck cancer, poor oral health has
recently been added to the list. A 2007 study published in American Journal of Epidemiology found that poor mouth health and
missing teeth were strongly linked to the development of oral cancer. Likewise,
patients with healthy smiles were found to be far less likely to develop oral
cancer. If you have been diagnosed with oral cancer, know that common oral
health problems such as gum disease and tooth decay could be making the
condition worse. Visiting our dental office regularly for professional
cleanings, examinations, and oral cancer screenings to help catch signs of oral
cancer early and make treatment easier and more effective.
Oral Health and Other
Poor oral health has been shown to be tied to other types of
cancers outside of the mouth. For example, a recent study conducted by NYU
Langone Health’s Perlmutter Cancer Center found that certain types of bacteria
in patients with gum disease was tied to a higher risk of developing esophageal
cancer. While esophageal cancer only accounts for 1% of new cancer cases
diagnosed annually, over 90% of patients will die of the disease. Untreated gum
disease opens up the tissues around the teeth to bacterial infection, allowing these
harmful bacteria to enter the bloodstream and infect other parts of the
patient’s body. Maintaining optimal oral health can help protect you from this
Your oral health effects much more than just your mouth. If you’re not taking care of your teeth, tongue, and gums, you could significantly increase your risk of developing cancer without even realizing it. If you’d like to learn more about the connection between oral health and cancer, contact our dental team to schedule an examination and cleaning today!