Dental Care

Good teeth are about more than the smile

Posted by on Oct 3, 2017 in Dental Care | 0 comments

We all want to have good teeth, mostly for the obvious reasons. We want to have a nice smile with straight, pearly white teeth that make us look friendly and attractive. We want to have nice smelling breath that makes people want to get close instead of running away in terror.

And good teeth will give you those things, but that is really just scratching the tartar of what a good set of chompers means for your life.

That’s because bad teeth can actually have long-term serious health consequences for you.

Colgate has helpfully rounded up some of the serious health risks compiled by the Mayo Clinic that come from not taking proper care of your teeth. Those include:

  1. Heart trouble

Bacteria that can collect in inflamed gums can enter your bloodstream and reach your heart if your teeth are not carefully taken care of. This bacteria can then cause a hardening of the arteries which increases the risk of heart attack or stroke.

  1. Pregnancy trouble

Poor dental care has been linked to early births and low birth weight.

  1. Dementia

The bacteria that creates gingivitis can enter the brain the same way other bacteria enters the heart, namely, through the bloodstream via the mouth. This bacteria has been linked to dementia and perhaps even Alzheimer’s.

  1. Respiratory trouble

Not all these bad bacteria ravage your health through the bloodstream, some of it can just be inhaled while you breathe and then cause havoc in your lungs. That’s right, the bacteria that gives bad breath can also lead to lung infections up to and including pneumonia.

  1. Diabetic trouble

Bad teeth don’t cause diabetes, but diabetes can be exacerbated by bad teeth. Inflamed gums make it harder to control blood sugar, which can obviously have some very negative consequences for those who must control the blood sugar at all costs.

From this short list, it’s clear that good teeth aren’t just important for the smile. That doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with going out and getting your teeth polished up to look particularly snazzy. Just remember, cosmetic fixes are just that: cosmetic. They do not necessarily improve the health of our teeth.

For that, the old prescriptions are still best: brush at least twice a day and get biannual checkups and cleanings at the dentist.

While the dentist does get a bad reputation, the work was done by him or her can actually be lifesaving, as seen from the risks above. No amount of discomfort in a dental chair is too much when the alternative is a heart attack or dementia.

So, even though it feels like a pain in a busy life, be sure to brush and floss regularly, set a dental appointment, and just take overall good care of your teeth.

You’ll smile better, your breath will smell better, and you’ll be healthier for it.

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