In 2000 when the publication of ‘Oral Health in America: A Report of the Surgeon General’ was released, it identified oral health as a national problem. According to the report, American people were losing their teeth owing to poor dietary and lifestyle habits. There were rising reports of dental caries in children as young as 2 years old. Middle-age people were witnessing tooth decay as a major health issue.
The Surgeon General’s report also cited a few findings: oral disease affects our overall health, lifestyle behavior is the major cause of tooth decay, and oral diseases are highly preventable. In this article, we will be discussing major tips to attain the best dental hygiene and care from the best dentist in downtown Manhattan.
The rise in tooth decay and other dental problems
Since our childhood, we have been taught to brush twice daily, floss religiously, and get regular dental checkups, yet the staggering number of dental caries, tooth extraction, and root canal treatments suggest something is missing from our oral care. Although there is a plethora of fluoride treatments, mouthwashes, and periodontal care, there has been more dental decay in the last 2 decades than in the previous century. Let’s have a look at some of the leading tooth decay problems:
- Dental caries: dental caries remain the most prevalent dental problem affecting children more than adults. It is now being called a “silent epidemic” due to its epidemic proportions. Though a very small percentage of the population is affected by dental caries due to genetic problems, the majority of the population owes this problem to poor diet and bad lifestyle choices. A combination of factors like bacteria, sugar, starchy food, tea, coffee, wines, tobacco, and frequent snacking, all are the leading causes of dental decay. Eating too much sugar and carbs results in bacteria forming plaque on the surface of teeth. These bacterias produce acid from the sugar that we eat, damaging the enamel of the tooth. Once the enamel (tooth’s protective layer) is eroded, acid attacks the dentin of the tooth and gets deep down to the root of the tooth.
- Gum problems: Gingivitis is another leading oral problem caused by a bacterial infection due to plaque formation on the teeth. Poor oral hygiene and bad eating habits are the main causes of Gingivitis. Symptoms include red and swollen gums. These gums also bleed very often. The sensitivity of the teeth also is heightened if you have gingivitis.
- Periodontitis: When gingivitis is ignored, it may lead to a severe form of gum problem called periodontitis. It is an acute form of gum disease in which the patient may lose his or her permanent teeth due to receding gums. Bad breath and a metallic taste in the mouth are other symptoms to look out for. Periodontitis should not be ignored as it may trigger an inflammatory response in your body
- Sensitive teeth: gum problems and weak enamel often leads to sensitive teeth. You may feel sensitivity while sipping on hot or cold drinks. Sharp pain is felt when you eat or drink cold and hot foods. Not one but many factors lead to sensitive teeth such as – root infection in the tooth, broken tooth, worn-down fillings, receding gums, or any gum problem. Sensitive teeth are also prone to cracks and breakage.
Important dental tips from one of the leading dentists in downtown Manhattan to prevent tooth decay
Today, dentistry is at the dawn of understanding that there is a relationship between the mouth and the rest of our bodies. Scientists have researched that there is a correlation between oral health and overall health. It was Dr. Reinhard Voll who reasoned that most of our health problems are related to our oral health problems. According to him, any infection that our mouth harbors affect our health. After this, there has been a paradigm shift in the health care delivery in dentistry. Though oral diseases are rarely life-threatening, they have become a major health problem due to their high prevalence and may also impact a person’s social and psychological life. It is important to maintain very good oral health as it is a leading health indicator. Oral problems like dental decay or dental caries is a common chronic childhood disease, it is highly preventable through making the right dietary and nutrition choices along with visiting your dentist regularly. Dental decay is a chronic, diet-dependent bacterial disease, resulting in considerable pain and extensive treatment. So, have a look at some important tips that will help you in maintaining good oral care and health:
- The early signs of tooth decay can be seen in babies who have unrestricted bottle feeding, drinking juice, or sweet food. To prevent early childhood caries, the best dentists in downtown Manhattan recommend restricting the milk bottle feeding time. Putting your baby to sleep with a bottle in his or her should be a complete no-no. The sugar in milk or juice will let the bacteria feed on it and thus will damage the teeth. Introduce a sippy cup by the time your baby is one year old. Also, start with the oral hygiene routine early. This will help your child get accustomed to regular oral care.
- As your child ages and is old enough to spit out, introduce him or her to a toothpaste containing fluoride. Brushing your teeth twice daily with fluoride-based toothpaste will help your teeth to remain clean. Dentists also recommend rinsing your mouth ideally after every meal or snack. Flossing is another routine that helps keep your teeth clean.
- One of the most important tips that the best dentist in downtown Manhattan recommends is to avoid frequent snacking and sipping. When you eat or drink anything other than water, the bacterias in your mouth start attacking the sugar of the food or drink, producing acid. And, when the enamel or dentin is compromised, tooth decay starts happening. Mindful eating is the trick to keeping your teeth as well as your body clean from the inside.
- Eating nutrition dense and healthy food is very imperative in preventing tooth decay. Our mouth is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. These bacterias are forever hungry for food that we eat. Bacteria feed on starchy and sweet food that gets collected in the mouth, leading to the formation of plaque. Without proper cleanup of plaque, it eventually becomes tartar. All this leads to the weakening of enamel and tooth decay. Many scientists and researchers have proved that processed foods, additives, and sugars are the main reasons behind many dental problems. Maintaining good oral hygiene alone will not help you in fighting against decay. It is important to change your dietary habits too if you want a healthy smile all along with your life.
An attractive smile, the ability to chew and speak well, and mostly the freedom from pain and sepsis – all this is achievable if we follow proper dental care and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Remember, the vast majority of dental problems are preventable. We just have to make wise decisions and help our kids to make healthy choices for a better lifestyle. Remember, our mouth is a portal to our body. Let’s keep it healthy to enjoy overall well-being.
Visit www.manhattanbeachdentalcenter.com to know more about keeping your dental woes at bay. Manhattan Beach Dental has the best dentists in downtown Manhattan who know perfectly well how to customize dental treatment plans according to your dental needs. Providing solutions to every dental problem, Manhattan Beach Dental is the leading family and cosmetic dentistry clinic based in Manhattan. Visit our website to discuss your dental needs and problems.