Oral health is more important than many people might realize. Your oral health can provide clues about your overall health. The most important parts of this preventive approach are to brush your teeth daily with fluoride toothpaste that is approved by the American Dental Association (ADA) and flossing daily. In addition, eating a balanced diet, not too high in sugars or refined carbohydrates, will significantly improve oral hygiene. With good dental hygiene, you can greatly reduce your risk of getting cavities, gingivitis, periodontitis, and other dental problems, while also saving you money!2

Normally the body’s natural defenses, combined with good oral health care, such as daily brushing and flossing, keep bacteria under control1. Without proper oral hygiene, bacteria can reach levels that might lead to oral infections, such as tooth decay and gum disease1. However, oral health can deteriorate even with regular practice of good oral hygiene habits.

Dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, is a symptom of reduced salivary flow and usually affects elderly people and those taking prescription and/ or nonprescription. In total, dry mouth affects about 10% of the population. Common side-effects of dry mouth include: Common symptoms include frequent thirst, cracked lips, sores in the mouth, a dry/ red tongue, difficulty chewing, swallowing or speaking, etc.

However, in addition to these symptoms, dry mouth can also raise the risk of gingivitis (gum disease), tooth decay, and oral infections such as thrush3. Dry mouth can also make it hard to wear dentures3. These effects have a significantly impact on oral hygiene, leading to deteriorating quality of life for these patients.

Talk to your dentist if you believe you suffer from dry mouth.

References:

  1. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/dental/art-20047475
  2. https://www.healthline.com/health/preventative-dentistry#benefits
  3. https://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/dental-health-dry-mouth#2

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