It’s no secret that taking a laid back approach to oral hygiene can be bad news for your teeth. But did you know that poor dental care can also be bad news for your overall health too?
That’s right, according to a growing body of scientific evidence, neglecting your teeth could be seriously bad for your health and could even contribute to conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.
If you’re wondering why, it’s because your mouth and body are inextricably linked, which probably isn’t all that surprising when you come to think about it.
Because of this intricate connection, your oral health can actually provide some pretty useful clues about your overall health. And inspired by this, here we’re going to take a closer look at what your dental health could reveal about other parts of your body.
Bad breath is bad news – fact. In the short term this can be caused by a variety of factors including pungent foods, smoking, dehydration and poor oral hygiene.
In some cases if bad breath is more persistent, it may also be the result of gum disease. But if you are still suffering from bad breath after a trip to your dentists and regular brushing and flossing, then another factor – such as a throat or nose infection could be at play.
In rare cases, a number of other medical conditions, such as sinusitis, a gastrointestinal condition or even diabetes could also be a contributing factor. That’s why if your dentist say that your mouth is healthy, but your are still experiencing bad breath, then it’s probably time to visit you GP.
Eroded tooth enamel can be a clear indication that it’s time to cut back on those sugary foods you love. Oh, and you might want to steer clear of acidic foods and drinks such as fruit juices and wine too, since it’s the acids in the food and drink that we consume that erodes tooth enamel.
But that said, there could be other factors at play too. For example, in some cases eroded tooth enamel can also be a sign of gastro-oesophageal reflux disease – a condition in which acid comes up from your stomach, thereby potentially damaging your teeth too.
To date a number of studies have found that individuals with this condition have much higher levels of tooth surface loss. Hence whilst occasional acid reflux is probably nothing to worry about, if it remains persistent it’s probably a good idea to visit your doctor.
In the meantime, to help protect your teeth from enamel erosion, it’s best to cut back on sugary and acidic foods. Additionally, it’s also a good idea to wait a while after eating before brushing your teeth. That’s because acidic foods can soften the enamel on the surface of your teeth, which means that brush too soon and you could end up brushing some of this away!
So try to wait around half an hour or so after eating before reaching for your toothbrush.
Worn Down Teeth
Worn down teeth are a key sign of bruxism – or teeth grinding – a condition in which people grind or clench their teeth. But did you know that bruxism itself is most commonly caused by stress?
People experiencing stress also produce high levels of the stress hormone coritsol – which can wreak havoc on both your body and gums. That’s why if you’re feeling stressed or anxious you may be at greater risk of oral health problems.
So if you’re feeling stressed make sure you take action and get stress busting. There are many different techniques you can use to help relieve stress including a variety of relaxation methods, such as deep breathing exercises.
Here at Brocklehurst Dental we’re passionate about dental health and can provide a wide range of dental services including teeth whitening in Buckinghamshire to help you achieve a whiter, brighter smile. For more information about our services, simply contact our friendly team today, by giving us a call on 01494 763353.