As a kid, I experienced my fair share of dental work. A few fillings here, a broken tooth there…I saw my dentist quite a few times. All those experiences and I never really knew what was happening each visit. Iʼd just show up, sit still (relatively), and open wide.
Fast forward to dental school and I realized that I had no idea what I was getting into. I knew little about dentistry and less about oral health. My education continues today and it amazes me all of the information about teeth that you can pick up out there in the media. My bedside is stacked full of boring dental journals that detail the science behind fixing teeth. It seems Iʼm never caught up. More and more, though, Iʼm seeing oral health related articles in everyday newspapers and magazines. The information is often very useful and informative. So much, in fact, that I thought Iʼd share a few things Iʼve read in non-dental media lately.
- Chewing raw, crunchy foods (carrots, apples, celery, etc.) can help to keep teeth from staining due to their natural abrasive scrubbing action. One more reason to eat fresh, healthy vegetables and fruits.
- People who suffer from untreated obstructive sleep apnea can actually lose up to ten percent of their functioning brain cells. The positive news is that after a few months of healthy sleep (and proper treatment) studies show that these lost brain cells can regenerate. Some forms of OSA can be treated effectively with an oral appliance made by your dentist. Prevention is the key to managing dental health care costs. Studies show that regular preventive dental visits and care will greatly reduce an individuals lifetime expenditures on dental health costs. A simple filling now is a lot more cost effective than a root canal and crown later.
- Consuming the omega-3 fatty acid DHA (found in such foods as canned albacore tuna) can reduce your risk of gum disease (periodontitis) by as much as twenty percent. This “good” fat has also been shown to help with other inflammation related diseases.
I guess Iʼm not the only one out here writing about teeth. Until next week, keep smiling.
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