Every child growing up is taught the importance of health of brushing their teeth at least twice a day, and often after every meal as well. Our 21stcentury diet is laden with sugars – both obvious and hidden, and it must never be forgotten that sugar is one of the biggest enemies of oral health.
In the UK, obtaining dental treatment through the NHS has become very difficult due to the scarcity of NHS doctors. This has forced many families to resort to private dental practices to deal with any dental issues. While standard check ups are relatively affordable, getting any kind of treatment soon adds up to be beyond the pockets of most people, particularly during a cost of living crisis when regular household expenses are rising steeply and consistently.
However, rotten and decaying teeth will never be an option, and can be avoided with the right and regular approach to caring for your teeth. Following the guidance below will enable you to avoid searching for ‘dental implants Sutton Coldfield’, or wherever your location is, saving you and your family thousands.
Good habits start at birth
Children are born with their tooth buds fully intact, covered with the gums. The earlier a child becomes habituated to keeping teeth and gums clean and free of food remains, the more it will become completely second nature to incorporating the routine and ritual into their everyday life.
Even before the teeth erupt during the first year of their life, parents should wipe over the gums with a damp gauze swab, and then spend some time getting the child used to a toothbrush when the teeth show through by brushing them over with a soft bristled brush.
And while it is tempting to leave a child with a bottle to suckle on as it gets older, it is important to remove it to avoid ‘baby bottle tooth decay’ which is when excessive sugar increases the product of bacteria which turns to acid and rots the child’s teeth, leading to a lifetime of potential problems.
Oral health – linked to long term physical health
Bad oral health is not isolated to the mouth – it is closely linked to the prevention of chronic diseases throughout an individual’s life.
There have been a myriad of studies over the years which have linked poor oral health to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, respiratory infections and even problems during pregnancy and birth.
Just as importantly, that link to physical health is underpinned by the importance of emotional wellbeing and self esteem as well. Having decayed or missing teeth takes away an individual’s will (or even ability) to smile. That fear of smiling will gradually erode away someone’s confidence and self esteem. Linked to the possible presence of physical pain that is associated with poor dental health, a lifetime’s history of not caring for your teeth can have far reaching consequences.
Monitoring health through the ages
The early detection of chronic illnesses is one of the most important ways of protecting an individual’s health, and regular dental check-ups are an important weapon part of the battle in keeping an eye on overall health. The systemic health consequences of chronic diseases can influence oral health in terms of gum condition, speed of decay, breath odour and enamel health. These could all be pointing to deeper, more serious issues, which is why that regular check-up is so important.
Windows may be a window into the soul, but your mouth is a window into your physical health. Good oral hygiene is not a complicated thing. It simply comes down to developing good brushing habits from as early an age as possible.