ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — You brush, floss, get your twice a year cleanings, and avoid sweets. But Ivanhoe has some surprising ways you could be causing damage to your teeth.
We’ve all heard this before …
“We should all brush a minimum of twice a day, in the morning and the evening, if not an additional one or two times during the course of the day,” stated orthodontist Lawrence Hier, DDS, MS.
But with all the brushing, flossing, and rinsing we do to protect our teeth, one culprit behind tooth damage could be your toothbrush. Dentists estimate ten to 20 percent of people have damaged their teeth or gums as a result of overbrushing.
“We always advise people to use soft toothbrushes, and that’s mainly because of gum tissue. We don’t want people to brush too hard and cause a recession of gum tissue,” continued Dr. Hier.
Brushing too hard or using the wrong toothbrush can also cause tooth sensitivity and wear down your enamel. Another thing that can damage your teeth is overeating. Eating large meals can cause gastroesophageal reflux and the built-up acid can lead to tooth erosion. Too much alcohol causes dehydration and dry mouth leading to tooth decay and oral infections. Also, gummy vitamins may be a great way to get kids to take their vitamins, but most are made with citric acid and sugar, which can eat away at tooth enamel.
Dentists say tooth enamel is the strongest substance in the human body but chewing ice can cause serious damage. It wears down tooth enamel, destroys braces and retainers, chips or cracks teeth, and even damages your dental fillings.
Contributors to this news report include: Milvionne Chery, Producer; and Roque Correa, Editor.
SURPRISING WAYS YOU ARE DAMAGING YOUR TEETH
BACKGROUND: Oral hygiene is the practice of keeping the mouth clean and is considered to be the best means of prevention of cavities, gingivitis, periodontitis, as well as helping to prevent bad breath. It is necessary for all persons to maintain the health of their teeth and mouth which consists of both personal and professional care. Dental X-rays are often performed as part of routine professional examinations. Regular teeth cleaning is important to remove plaque that may develop even with careful brushing and flossing, especially in areas that are difficult to reach. Professional cleaning includes tooth scaling and tooth polishing and debridement if too much tartar has accumulated. Dental hygienists use special techniques, instruments, and their professional training to complete oral hygiene that is impossible to do yourself.
ORAL HYGIENE AND HEALTH: Systemic diseases that affect the entire body, such as diabetes, AIDS and Sjögren’s syndrome, may first become apparent because of mouth lesions or other oral problems. The mouth is filled with countless bacteria, some linked to tooth decay and periodontal disease. Researchers have found that periodontitis is linked with other health problems, such as cardiovascular disease, stroke and bacterial pneumonia. Likewise, pregnant women with periodontitis may be at increased risk of delivering preterm and/or low-birth-weight infants. Therefore, prevention is an important step in maintaining overall oral health. Brush teeth thoroughly twice a day and clean between your teeth with floss or another type of interdental cleaner once a day. Your dentist may recommend using an antimicrobial mouth rinse as part of your daily oral hygiene routine. Choose dental products with the American Dental Association’s Seal of Acceptance, an important symbol of a dental product’s safety and effectiveness. Be sure to eat a balanced diet and limit snacks, which may reduce your risk of developing tooth decay and periodontal disease.
NEW STUDY ON ORAL HYGIENE AND COVID-19: According to new research, people suffering from gum disease could pass the COVID-19 virus into the lungs from saliva moving directly from mouth to bloodstream. Evidence shows that blood vessels of the lungs, rather than airways, are affected initially in COVID-19 lung disease with high concentrations of the virus in saliva. The researchers propose that dental plaque accumulation and periodontal inflammation further intensify the likelihood of the virus reaching the lungs and causing more severe cases of the infection. Experts say this discovery could make effective oral healthcare a potentially lifesaving action recommending that the public take simple, but effective, daily steps to maintain oral hygiene and reduce factors contributing to gum disease. “Gum disease makes the gums leakier, allowing microorganisms to enter into the blood. Simple measures such as careful toothbrushing and interdental brushing to reduce plaque build-up, along with specific mouthwashes, or even saltwater rinsing to reduce gingival inflammation, could help decrease the virus’ concentration in saliva,” explained co-author Iain Chapple, Professor of Periodontology at the University of Birmingham.
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