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8 Dental Health Facts and Tips

Did you know 90% of systemic diseases can be detected in the state of your oral health? Here are some helpful, need-to-know tips and fact to maintain a healthy smile.

Dentist Dr. Cochran with his wife Dr. Conrad

Oral Health Clue to Your Overall Health

Just like the nails, the oral cavity is a reflection of your overall health. 90% of systemic diseases have oral manifestations. These include clues to cancer, heart disease, diabetes and immune system problems. Dentists do not diagnose health problems outside your teeth and gums, but they can recognize signs of bigger health problems and refer patients to other doctors. This is especially useful for diseases that are difficult to spot, such as diabetes.

Keep Away from the Toilet!

Do not store your toothbrush within 6 feet of a toilet. Airborne particles from the flush can travel up to a distance of 6 feet. Alternatively, just keep the toilet seat cover down. Remind all your family members to keep the toilet cover seat down before flushing. That way, the deadly bacterial toilet spray is contained within the bowl. Store your toothbrushes as far away from the toilet bowl as possible, or keep it inside a bathroom cabinet. Using a toothbrush cover or clip only traps moisture and helps bacteria multiply on the toothbrush head.

No Tooth Decay Bacteria in Newborn Babies

Newborn babies do not have tooth decay bacteria. Often, the bacteria that causes tooth decay is transmitted from mother to baby when she kisses the child or blows on hot food or drink before feeding the baby. This is not to say you should stop kissing your baby. If baby is not getting tooth decay bacteria from mother, they’ll eventually get it from somewhere else.

Don’t Re-infect Yourself

Replace your toothbrush after you have had an episode of flu, cold, or other viral infections including canker sores. Notorious microbes can implant themselves on the toothbrush bristles, leading to re-infection. This is also why you should never share toothbrushes with other people. If you forget your toothbrush, do not borrow somebody’s toothbrush. Rinse, use your finger, or buy a disposable toothbrush instead.

Fluoride Toxicity is Real

Even small doses of fluoride can cause symptom of fluoride toxicity in children. Fluoride toxicity is nasty, causing stomach pain, nausea, headaches and vomiting. Always keep toothpaste away from the reach of children under 6 years of age. Make sure children habitually spit out toothpaste after brushing. For very young children, who you can’t trust to spit, use children’s toothpaste with no fluoride. Read the ingredient list carefully when shopping for fluoride free children’s toothpastes because even toothpaste brands marketed for children, with fruit and bubblegum flavors, contain 3% fluoride. Infants under the age of 2 years, can skip toothpaste entirely when brushing.

8 important dental tips

Drop that Soda Habit

People who drink three or more glasses of soda a day have 62% more tooth decay, fillings and tooth loss than everybody else. The combination of acidity and sugars is particularly deadly for your teeth. Add on all the artificial dyes used in sodas and now your teeth are stained, as well. We already know this, it’s not breaking news: soda pops are not good for your health in so many ways. It’s the leading contributor to the national obesity weighing scale. Even diet soda will make you gain weight by increasing appetite.

3 Out of 4 Americans have Gum Disease

75% of the United States population suffers from some stage of periodontal gum disease. When the mouth accumulates bacteria, it builds plaque on the teeth. Right now, try scraping your tooth with a finger nail, if a white paste comes off your tooth, that’s plaque. Plaque that is not removed hardens and becomes tartar, a substance that is difficult to remove with just a toothbrush. Tartar and plaque collect even more bacteria, which inflames the gums around the teeth. Periodontal gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in the United States. Make sure to visit a dentist twice a year for a cleaning to dislodge tartar and plaque, and prevent periodontal gum disease.

Be Grateful for that Toothbrush

The first toothbrush with bristles was manufactured in China in 1498. Bristles from hogs, horses and badgers were used. Doesn’t that bit of information make you grateful for the common plastic toothbrush? Daily oral hygiene, brushing at least twice a day and flossing once a day, prevents common gum disease and tooth decay.

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Dr. Josh Chocran

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