Tooth loss becomes a growing concern as we age and failing to maintain good oral hygiene practices can increase the likelihood of decay and loss. Taking care of your teeth and gums is essential and requires a team effort between you and your dentist. Learning more about these causes of loss can help you by giving you the information you need to embrace better oral care practices.
Don't Avoid the Dentist
Many of us fear going to the dentist, usually because past experiences have been unpleasant. While there's the possibility that you may need dental work done, especially if you haven't been seeing your Beverly Hills dentist regularly, delaying a visit could make matters worse. Tooth decay advances over time and, left untreated, can spread to cause gum disease, bone loss in the jaw, and the decay of surrounding teeth.
Instead of letting your fear get the better of you, share your concerns with your Beverly Hills dentist. By talking about your fears, your dentist can set many of your worries at ease and help you feel more comfortable, during your visits. Seeing your dentist at least once every six months is important, because it will help your dentist identify problems early and take care of them, before they worsen. Over time, regular visits will ensure fewer and fewer problems, leading to more comfortable visits and a more impressive smile.
Be Wary of Bruxism
Bruxism is the act of grinding your teeth and it affects millions of people. While the subconscious grinding, or gnashing, of teeth may be attributed to stress, it can also be caused by crooked, missing, or misaligned, teeth. Most people grind their teeth in their sleep, when they don't have the ability to prevent it. Unfortunately, bruxism can have devastating effects on the teeth, causing the enamel to erode and the teeth to chip, crack, or break.
If you do have a problem grinding your teeth, you should discuss it with your Beverly Hills dentist. After examining your teeth for damage, your dentist will likely recommend mouth guards for you to wear to bed. These devices are especially engineered to prevent teeth from grinding together, as you sleep. This will protect your teeth from further damage. Additionally, practicing stress reduction techniques before bed may also limit the likelihood that you'll grind your teeth in your sleep.
Be Watchful for Periodontitis
Periodontitis is a specific type of gum disease that can lead to tooth loss, if it's left untreated. It's a condition in which harmful bacteria attacks the gums and erodes them, loosening the teeth and eventually causing them to fall out. While some bacteria in the mouth is helpful, harmful bacteria can thrive, if you're not taking proper care of your teeth and gums. As the bacteria multiplies, it targets the gums and teeth, causing periodontitis to develop.
Usually, even the average person can identify periodontitis in the early stages. If your gums are sore, or if they appear discolored, you should see your Beverly Hills dentist as soon as possible. Allowing any type of gum disease to go untreated can lead to a worsening condition, which may not be reversible. Even if it doesn't cause tooth loss, it may erode the teeth badly enough that they will have to be extracted.
Diet Plays a Part
The foods you eat will also determine how strong your teeth remain over time. Foods high in sugar, or very acidic foods, are the biggest dangers we face in the fight against tooth loss. Sugar clings to the teeth and becomes transformed into bacteria, which attacks tooth enamel. Once it gets past the enamel, it can erode the tooth, causing cavities to develop. Sugar attacks the gums in a similar way, so, when you eat sugary foods and don't brush afterwards, it opens up the door for advanced decay and gum disease. Similarly, acidic foods soften tooth enamel and make it possible for bacteria to attack the teeth more easily.
All of the factors mentioned here can work together to weaken your oral health and promote tooth loss. By contacting Smile Angels of Beverly Hills and scheduling a free initial consultation, you can get the help you need to protect your teeth. Regular visits and proper oral hygiene practices can help you keep your teeth and gums healthy.