A smile is one of the most natural human responses to stimuli that makes us happy, excited, or surprised. Ever heard the phrase “hiding behind a smile?” Smiling is also common for people when they are nervous, scared, or upset. However, if you are suffering from common dental health issues, you may be hesitant to show off your smile. While accidents happen, many dental issues are completely avoidable. Here are three of the most common and preventable dental concerns that could be ailing your smile:
#1. Broken or Cracked Teeth
A broken tooth can not only be painful and negatively impact your ability to chew or the alignment of your bite, but it can also cause insecurities about your smile.
How Does a Tooth Get Broken?
A tooth most often breaks due to impact or because the tooth is already otherwise weak. Your tooth may be weak if you grind your teeth or clench your jaw. Teeth can become weak due to cavities and large fillings. You may also have weak spots in your teeth from eating hard foods such as candy or ice chips. Unfortunately, sports injuries, falls, or other accidents are very common ways to break a tooth or teeth.
How Do You Prevent a Broken Tooth?
To avoid breaking or cracking a tooth, it is important to take the proper precautions when you know you will be at risk. If you have bruxism or play contact sports, invest in a mouthguard. If you know that your enamel is weakened, avoid hard and sticky foods and opt for something more easily chewed. Teeth with cavities should be restored as soon as possible. If your dentist indicates that some teeth are weakened due to a large cavity, the tooth should be restored with a crown, as soon as possible.
#2. Yellowed Teeth
While teeth are not pure white, yellowed teeth can indicate that your oral health needs attention. You may also feel less than confident about your smile.
Why Do Teeth Turn Yellow?
Using tobacco and drinking dark-colored drinks like coffee and tea can cause staining on the tooth enamel surface. As we age, the enamel on our teeth becomes worn down, exposing more and more dentin, giving a yellow appearance to the teeth. Other common reasons for yellowed teeth include a poor diet, poor oral hygiene, and even some diseases and medications.
How Do You Prevent Yellow Teeth?
The best way to prevent yellow teeth is to pay close attention to your oral hygiene. Regular brushing, flossing, and visits to your dentist can keep your teeth healthy and white. If you are an older adult or have a medical condition that causes yellow teeth, speak with your dentist about protective and whitening options.
#3. Gum Disease
It is estimated that gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, affects up to half of Americans. This condition causes inflamed, irritated, and sometimes swollen gums. Gum disease has two stages: gingivitis and periodontitis. When gum disease reaches the periodontitis stage, irreversible damage to the surrounding bone can occur. Early treatment is imperative to prevent gum disease from advancing.
How Do You Get Gum Disease?
Gum disease is an inflammation of the gums caused by bacteria that gets below the gumline. This is most typically caused by poor dental hygiene habits, such as neglecting brushing and flossing or not thoroughly cleaning the hard-to-reach areas around your teeth.
How Do You Prevent Gum Disease?
Brushing and flossing twice daily, using mouthwash, and seeing your dentist for regular cleanings are great ways to prevent gum disease. Ask your dentist more about the right ways to brush and floss to prevent the buildup of bacteria in your mouth.
If you’ve been diagnosed with gum disease, it is important to follow through with the recommended treatment as soon as possible. Treatment begins with a deep cleaning of the infected pockets around your teeth. Because gum health is connected to conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer, it is imperative to follow through with periodontal cleaning and treatment.
Prevent Common Dental Health Issues With Regular Dental Visits
You deserve to feel confident about your smile! Whether you haven’t seen the dentist in six months or six years, we welcome you to make an appointment with our office. At Empire Dental Care, our goal is gentle dentistry. We take every possible step to ensure that your experience in our office is comprehensive, compassionate, and comfortable.
Call us at 585-671-1650 to make an appointment with Empire Dental Care or fill out our contact form today.