Preventing Oral Disease and Saving Your Smile
The patients of Artistic Touch Dentistry in Melbourne, Florida all know how keeping an oral health routine, that includes daily brushing, flossing, and twice yearly dental appointments, is the surest way to make sure the teeth you have today are the teeth you keep your entire life. However, what many people are only beginning to understand is that by keeping your mouth healthy with a daily routine is a simple, long-term way to prevent oral disease and chronic illnesses.
Along with a bright, white smile, the most tangible and observable result of daily brushing is the prevention of mouth diseases and conditions like cavities and gum disease. To put it simply, there are two types of bacteria in our mouths: good bacteria and bad bacteria. The good bacteria is there to breakdown food and begin the process of digestion; however, when excess bad bacteria is not removed from the mouth, it begins to feed on leftover sugar and causes the mouth to become acidic. This in turn, starts the process of tooth decay and gum disease. Removing this bacteria is as easy as brushing and flossing each and every day.
Cavities can be treated many ways, but, the best way to treat them is to prevent them from happening in the first place. When you feel a pain in your tooth that gets worse when you eat hot or cold foods or perhaps when you eat or drink something particularly sweet, you may have a cavity. Your Melbourne dentist will diagnose your cavity with an x-ray at your appointment. She will then explain the severity of your condition to you. If you have a mild cavity Your dentist will be able to place a composite filling. Composite fillings are the best way to fill cavities because they offer a lasting aesthetic solution without the need to remove more tooth than necessary. If your cavity has decayed enough of your tooth to reach the nerve, a root canal may be necessary. Crowns for severe cases of decay are also an option for some people. Dental implants are also an effective solution for a decayed-beyond-repair tooth. Your dentist will always let you know the pros and cons of each treatment, and help you decide what is best for you based on your condition.
Understanding and identifying the various stages of gum disease is also important for every one of Dr. Brazdo’s patients. Gum disease, or periodontal disease, can affect many other areas of the body, not just the gums. The first stage of gum disease is known as gingivitis. Gingivitis is characterized by inflamed gums that bleed. If you recognize the signs of gingivitis early, it is easy to reverse the damage and remove the bacteria. However, if left untreated gingivitis can progress into periodontal disease, which affects both the bone and gum tissue.
Periodontal disease is a serious issue. One that cannot be cured, but must be managed over a person’s lifetime. It creates deep pockets between the gums and teeth where bacteria clusters and causes decay. Major tooth loss and infection is common for people who suffer from this disease. Deep cleaning is necessary to mitigate the effects and save teeth, but preventing periodontal disease with daily brushing and flossing is easy and will spare you extensive dental work and possibly a myriad of other chronic illnesses and conditions.
The prevention of cavities and periodontal disease is extremely important for your oral health, but more and more studies are showing that by preventing mouth diseases with brushing and flossing you may also be preventing some other serious chronic illnesses as well.
It’s All About Bacteria
There will always be bacteria in your mouth, but it’s the type of bacteria that makes the difference. Good bacteria help break down food and start the digestive process, but when sugar and acid are able to remain on the teeth, bad bacteria are able to reproduce and cause intense harm. One such bad bacteria, Porphyromonas gingivalis, is strongly tied to periodontal disease. It is being found in pancreatic cancer cells and even in the brain of Alzheimer’s patients. Researchers are currently trying to learn if this is just a coincidental finding, or if it is a causal one. However, knowing that these bacteria, which are indicators of periodontal disease, have been found around so many other chronic, life-threatening conditions, is enough for our dentist at Artistic Touch Dentistry to remind her patients once again how important it is to keep up with their oral health routine.
If you have any questions about how you can best perform your morning and nightly dental health routine, for not only your mouth but your whole body too, don’t hesitate to ask us today. Our Melbourne, Florida team of tooth specialists and our amazing dentist cannot wait to fill you in. It’s so important to us that our patients prevent cavities, periodontal disease, and potentially chronic infections and conditions that we just can’t say it enough. A brush and floss a day (with a bi-annual trip to your dentist,) keeps the cardiologist, oncologist, and neurologist away.