Is Unhealthy Lifestyle Affecting Our Oral Health?
We are living in an era where everything is supposed to take place quickly, whether it’s reaching a destination, packing a quick meal or a quick smoke break!
While we know our lifestyle changes do have an affect on our overall health, did you also know that it can have adverse effects on our oral health?
Alright, so when was the last time you planned to regularly keep a check on your oral health? Can’t recollect, can you? In this quick fashioned world, the maximum effort we take for our oral health well-being is brushing them every morning. Yes, that’s the least some of us do and can be guilty of.
It’s sad we do not realise the impact poor oral hygiene can cause – It can lead to oral health problems like cavity, periodontitis, oral cancer and complicate other overall health problems like dementia, cardiovascular diseases, respiratory infections and diabetes.
As dental professionals, we have observed that now, more than ever before, oral hygiene is being taken for granted. But remember, your oral health is known to be a true indicator of your overall health. Wondering how is that even possible?
How is oral health connected to overall health?
Our mouths are breeding grounds for bacteria. When this bacteria crosses the right amount, it causes infection or serious ailments. In cases of HIV/AIDS, cancer patients and diabetic patients, oral health problems can cause major health issues. Regular dental visits is one of the best ways to keep
Getting back to our original question – Is Unhealthy Lifestyle Affecting Our Oral Health?
Yes, an unhealthy lifestyle can have a negative impact on our oral health.
Here are 5 poor lifestyle habits that are hampering our oral health:
1. Smoking or chewing tobacco and drinking
Excessive smoking and drinking is on the rise. Smoking is known to cause harm to the health of the gums, as the smoke from cigars/cigarettes have a toxic impact on the gum tissues. Besides, it can also cause enamel decay. The worst impact smoking can have on us is developing oral cancer.
Drinking can leave you dehydrated, making your mouth prone to more bacterial action, sometimes, the colour in some drinks can cause teeth staining. Additionally, the acidity in the drinks can create permanent damage to the enamel. Both these activities, although done for leisure, can cause serious harm to your oral health. And yes, both have been a big contributor to teeth staining.
2. Carbonated Drinks/Sugary Foods
Carbonated drinks and sugary foods are filled with additives and artificial flavoring. These sugary foods have an acidic PH, which is harmful for our gums and teeth. Also, the sugar in these foods act as an energy source for bacteria growth that causes oral cavities.The acidic substance in these foods and drinks can cause tooth erosions too. Children need to be more careful as they have higher chances of developing oral health issues as consumption of sugar is more during childhood.
3. Consumption of medicines
When our body suffers from ailments, even as small as a normal body ache, we do not have the patience to let it heal by itself. We pop pills quickly, pills like painkillers! In other cases, patients are under treatment and need to consume medications on a daily basis. All these medications can cause dryness in our mouths. Dryness activates bacteria which leads to various oral complications as stated earlier. Saliva is vital to keep our mouth moist; it washes away food and neutralizes the acids that are produced by plaque. Dry mouth can lead to bad odor, gum problems or more. Some medicines are known to cause acid refluxes which can harm the teeth enamel. Make sure to stay hydrated always.
Given the fast-paced life, stress has become an increasing cause of concern to oral health, as well as overall health. It is normal to overlook the effect stress has on our oral health. But you should not normalise it.
A few ways stress can cause harm to our oral health:
- Stress can cause people to neglect their oral-health routines, like dental visits, brushing twice everyday, etc.
- When under stress, people tend to make poor lifestyle choices like consuming too much alcohol, smoking and eating more sugary foods
- One of the reasons for bruxism or teeth grinding is stress. Bruxism wears down tooth surfaces. Grinding loosens the teeth and can sometimes cause tooth fractures.
5. Less consumption of water or dehydration
Water decreases the risk of dry mouth. It washes the bacteria that accumulates after eating and drinking. It avoids issues like mouth odor, gum problems and cavity issues. Water is the best beverage for your teeth because:
- Fluoride water strengthens your teeth
- Keeps your mouth clean always
- It’s calorie free
Oral health tips to include in your lifestyle
Undeniably, oral health is one factor that contributes to a healthy lifestyle. Here are a few oral care habits that you must inculcate in your lifestyle:
- Brushing your teeth twice every day.
- Flossing after eating
- Regular dental clean-ups and visits
- Avoid consuming excess sugar and sugary foods
- Stay hydrated always, with water – not alcohol or other carbonated drinks
Just how you keep a check on your overall health, make sure to keep a check on your oral health. For all your dental care needs, we are here!