Learn More About Your Oral Health!

Oral health just got a whole lot more interesting! Thanks to research, symptoms appearing in your mouth can directly reflect what’s happening elsewhere in your body. Conditions such as gum disease can be precursors to scary stuff like cognitive decline and diabetes.
It’s too bad that fewer adults than ever regularly visit the dentist, according to a recent survey taken by the ADA. Blowing off your twice-a-year checkup means that you could be missing a manageable mouth problem and therefore allowing it to snowball into serious oral complications. Below are some common precursors that could appear in your mouth when you are not attending your twice-a-year checkup.
Stains: They aren’t just an aesthetic issue. Though they’re not dangerous on their own, stains typically are a buildup of plaque—clumps of sticky bacteria (and not the healthy kind present in every mouth). A smile full of splotchy teeth means a mouth filled with tons of microbes. Too many microbes can lead to gum disease.
Sensitivity: Hot or cold drinks or food can make teeth tingle. But if you’re getting more “ouch!” than “oh,” you might be harboring a cavity that could, if left untreated, spread to surrounding nerve tissue leading to a root canal. The trick is to catch it early on—by the time you’re in serious pain, it might be too late for a filling.
Bad Breath: Sure, it could be the garlic bread you ate last night. But if your oral odor stays around for more than two weeks, there might be another culprit: gum disease. When the bacteria that cause the condition mix with healthy mouth bacteria, it creates smelly sulfur compounds.
Bleeding: Spot a few specks of blood when you rinse after brushing or flossing? You might just be an overzealous cleaner. If, however, you routinely spy more tinted than clear spit in the sink, see your dentist. Bloody gums could be a sign of oral inflammation or gingivitis.
Gum Size: Healthy gums are pale pink and look like mini sheaths for your teeth. If your teeth suddenly appear to be smaller, your gums could be inflamed. If they look bigger—or if the tooth area closest to the gum line seems to shrink—you could have bigger issues. Gum disease is the number one cause of receding gums, which leaves exposed roots vulnerable to decay.
Tongue Trouble: Normal tongues look a little hairy. If yours is on the bald side, you might have a vitamin B deficiency. If it looks whitish, it could be due to inflammation, dry mouth, or even an infection on your tongue. It’s called oral thrush.
If you have any concerns about any of these issues above, please call us at 630-271-9999.

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