Revolution Mother

Revolution Mother

Things Your Dentist Should Be Telling You

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Image by intermedlinemedicaltouris via flickr

Usually we associate the dentist with somewhere we go when something’s gone wrong with our teeth but they can also be a powerful ally in preventing illness. Not only is your dentist responsible for your teeth, but also how your face, airway, and jaw develop. All of these can affect how you breathe.

So, here are 5 things your dentist might not be telling you. Feel free to bring these topics up yourself next time you go for a check-up.

  1. If you tend to grind your teeth, the dentist should screen you for obstructive sleep apnoea and, if necessary, refer you to a sleep specialist. Grinding is a response to your body struggling to breathe when you are asleep. Treating sleep apnoea early on can prevent depression, premature aging, heart and circulatory damage, and anxiety.
  1. Mouthwashes and antibacterial toothpastes are doing us harm. While all the advertising would have you think it’s good for you, the whole idea is harmful to both your oral health and the rest of your body. Antibacterial products tend to wipe out good and bad bacteria alike, harming gut bacteria and microbiomes.
  1. Before having cosmetic work done, you need a foundation for healthy teeth. This means your dentist in Gold Coast should not start doing cosmetic work on you unless you have a foundation for strong oral health, including straight teeth, no gum disease and good sleeping patterns (i.e. the ability to breathe without interruptions during the night).
  1. Teeth can heal themselves sometimes. You often hear people talking about flossing and brushing for cavity prevention. That’s only part of preventing cavities. The key is to ensure your teeth are regaining minerals faster than losing them. You can promote remineralization by avoiding processed foods and having a diet high in alkaline water, vegetables and tea. Dark chocolate is also a powerful fluoride that helps to re-mineralize teeth.
  1. The health of your mouth can affect the health of the rest of your body. Oral health is strongly connected with your well-being. Many studies have shown that gum disease has been linked to dementia, heart disease, and even pregnancy complications. A dentist should be screening you for oral cancer and discussing preventative measures. Your teeth, face, mouth, and back of your throat need to be examined to see if you have sleep apnoea. Sleep ability is an aspect we should be concerned about, just as much as high blood pressure and cholesterol. If you have diabetes, kidney or heart disease, or any another inflammatory condition, your dental specialist will be able to assist your GP with a clearer picture of what’s causing your issues.

In your efforts for health and well-being, do not neglect your oral health. It is a fundamental piece of the equation that, as we work to reduce being susceptible to disease and illness, can lead to richer, fuller and longer lives.

So, the next time you head off to a dental appointment, bring up one or more of these topics with him or her. In fact, just pick one to avoid getting overwhelmed. Essentially, this one thing can open the door to greater conversation that can help you get the most out of your visits to the dentist.

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