Healthy Teeth – Healthy Body: Tips to Improve Oral and Overall Health
The health of your mouth and the health of your body are connected. For the past couple decades, scientists have been researching the concept of oral systemic health, which is the theory that oral health affects general wellness and vice versa. This research has shown that many oral health conditions, especially gum disease (which is incredibly common among adults) affect the body. For instance, gum disease has been linked to cardiovascular issues, Alzheimer’s, and diabetes. Oral systemic health is why many health professionals practice comprehensive dentistry that includes the prevention of disease.
When people think of drinking water, they often think about avoiding dehydration and fatigue. While water intake is certainly important for a well-functioning body, it is also important to one’s oral health. Water is an excellent resource for keeping one’s mouth clean. It acts as a rinsing agent. Additionally, water helps dilute acid in the mouth, which can contribute to weakened tooth enamel. Water consumption keeps soft oral tissues moist as well. Dry gums, for example, are prone to irritation and even infection. Our team recommends that patients drink water throughout the day rather than chugging large amounts infrequently.
Avoid Sugar and Acid
Many popular beverages and foods have an unhealthy combination of sugar and acid. Sugar and acid are dangerous to oral health separately, and certainly more problematic when combined. Acid weakens teeth by softening tooth enamel and sugar feeds oral bacteria, which then colonize and coat teeth in the form of plaque. Weakened tooth enamel and colonizing bacteria put patients at a very high risk for developing tooth decay.
Don’t Chew on Inedible Objects
The nervous habit of chewing on pen caps and ice cubes is incredibly destructive. Over time, chewing or biting down on hard objects will weaken and ultimately crack tooth enamel. The same goes for bruxism—the act of clenching or grinding teeth. These habits cause untimely tooth wear and often require restorative dentistry treatments for repairing permanent enamel damage.
We offer dental implant restorations, oral pathology, and tooth extraction services. Call our practice at Charlottesville Oral Surgery & Dental Implant Center to reserve a consultation with our oral surgery team.