For Buffalo dental center, oral health is a family affair

Your family’s oral health reflects everything from diet to stress level. Some common conditions such as gum disease also have a family link. Dr. Gordon Kent and his team at the Smile Center address these and other factors that influence oral health to get your family looking and feeling its best.

Disease and DNA

Destructive gum disease is most commonly caused by inadequate preventive care. However, the American Academy of Periodontology reports half of all cases of gum disease have a genetic component.

Since the Smile Center takes pride in the long-term relationships that have resulted in treating generations of families, Dr. Kent and his team get to know patients well enough to connect the dots between some families and increased risk of gum disease. Identifying risk early helps the Smile Center proactively treat younger family members before disease develops. In its earliest stages, with proper professional treatments and at-home care, damage can be reversed and the progression of the disease halted.

Decay and diet

One of the big threats to the health of your teeth comes from decay. Your teeth are layered. Enamel is the outermost layer. This protective covering is stronger than bones. Yet, it is no match for the acids produced when sugars and mouth bacteria combine. Some of the biggest sources of sugar come from popular drinks. For instance, you may think sports drinks or fruit juice are healthy alternatives to soda. These drinks contain very little actual fruit. Instead, the sweet flavor comes from high sugar content. This acidic combination works its way from the enamel toward the inner chamber. The bacteria that produce plaque and its hardened form, tartar, feed on sugars so it’s important to rinse your mouth regularly with water if you must consume sugary drinks. Of course, proper brushing and flossing is necessary to remove sugars and food debris.

Encourage mouth-healthy foods. Eat your fruit. Think of all the foods that are good for your body. Those foods are also great for your family’s oral health. Calcium and phosphorus in milk and cheese are thought to protect the enamel and restore (or remineralize) enamel damaged by acids. Firm and crunchy fruits and vegetables stimulate the flow of saliva, a natural cleanser. Beware of excessive consumption of acidic fruits and vegetables, such as tomatoes and citrus.

Lifestyle and lingering oral health problems

Chronic stress is linked to a host of health consequences. You or a loved one’s inability to properly manage or channel stress can have disastrous consequences for your teeth. By inhibiting immune function, your body can’t fight off harmful invaders such as the bacteria responsible for gum disease.

Teeth grinding and clenching are also associated with stress. The pressure placed on the teeth from such grinding and clenching is further linked to disordered jaw movement and stiffness, facial and neck pain, and headaches.

The Smile Center family will guide your family to better oral and overall health. Check-ups and professional cleanings at intervals as prescribed by Dr. Kent are a cornerstone of oral health. To schedule an appointment, contact your family dental center in the Buffalo area, the Smile Center, at 716-568-7015.

Dr. Kent and his team are like family, and apply their relationship-based approach and proactive care to treat you and your loved ones as a family dental center
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