Keeping your mouth healthy
Brush your teeth, floss, don’t eat sugar – we dentists are constantly harping on about these things!
Unfortunately it seems as a profession we are failing to get the message across.
Most recent research shows that more than 80% of Irish people have gum disease!
Gum disease is a low grade chronic infection constantly draining your body’s resources. Let’s face it, it’s hard enough to stay fit and well with our hectic lives without another factor threatening our wellbeing!
Gum disease has proven links to;
• Heart disease – HEART ATTACKS and STROKE
• Low birth weight and premature birth
• Infertility in men
Not to mention Bad breath and tooth loss!
Even if you don’t suffer from any of the above, having a low grade chronic infection will contribute to feeling “run down” and “not 100%”.
The solution is easy; a dental health check and cleaning by your dentist followed by a good home care regime.
The ratio of importance is roughly 70:30 patient to dentist in the role of good oral hygiene. It’s important to get your check up and cleaning at least once a year but if you’re not doing the home care you will most likely experience problems.
Have you heard of the 21 day habit forming theory? If you can make yourself do something for 21 days it will then become a habit. After 21 days its easy because you just do it out of habit.
If you find it hard to remember to brush twice a day and for the correct amount of time just think of this. Find a way to make yourself do it for just 3 weeks and then it will be imprinted in your brain, an unbreakable excellent habit. Keep thinking 21 Days!
What to do?
1. Make sure you brush twice a day for 2-3 minutes (time it, it’s ages!)
2. Make sure your tooth brush is in good condition, change it every 2-3 months or whenever it looks splayed.
3. Use a soft or medium toothbrush of good quality.
4. Floss once a day or at the least, 3 times a week. Smell the floss, an odour means plaque. That will make you do it more often!
5. Gums bleed in response to plaque; if your gums bleed, there is plaque present that needs to be removed.
6. Use a disclosing tablet every few months to test your brushing effectiveness (if you don’t know what this is, we’ll explain it to you and give you some at your next appointment)
Some Dental FACTS
• Dental disease is the biggest disease epidemic worldwide
• Over 80% of Irish people have gum disease
• Full dentures have 15% – 20% of the chewing function of natural teeth
• Less than half of Irish adults have yearly dental check ups
• One in four people suffer from chronic bad breath
• The main cause of bad breath is poor oral hygiene (63%)
• Dental phobia causes 75% of the population to suffer tooth ache rather than see a dentist
• 65% of all soft drink sales are made by children under 15
• Irish children eat 4 times as much sweets and drink 3 times as much soft drinks as Canadian or Norwegian children.
• Full dentures were a common wedding present in Ireland in the last century!