Is Your Mouth Giving Away Clues To Your Physical Wellbeing?
If eyes are the window to the soul – then the mouth is a window to physical wellbeing. Revealing signs of health and vitality and disease and illness – your mouth may actually help save your life or at the very least, give some vital clues as to your level of health. And who better than to spot and monitor oral clues than your orthodontist. Though not your family doctor or general dentist – your orthodontist spends a lot of time looking in your mouth over the course of treatment – and can notice issues that may otherwise go undetected.
Clenching and Grinding Leaves Tell-Tale Signs
Short flat teeth that lack the anatomy of cusps and grooves are often a clear give-away that a patient is clenching and grinding their teeth. Triggered by several factors that may include emotional stress, sleep apnea and an imbalanced bite – clenching and grinding of teeth not only damages enamel and dentin but can cause a sufferer to constantly wake with a headache and sore facial muscles and have to deal with jaw joint discomfort and stiffness. Interestingly, orthodontic treatment frequently breaks the pattern of grinding due to the rearrangement of teeth and subsequent rebalancing of a bite.
There’s No Hiding Unhealthy Gums
Red, puffy and bleeding gums are just impossible to hide – and can often signify a lack of oral hygiene or the presence of certain illnesses such as diabetes or leukemia. There’s nothing worse than doing everything right to take care of teeth and gums, only to be told that your gum health is just not that healthy. Sharing medical information with your orthodontic team will help them better understand the health of oral tissues and come up with a plan to help improve the level of dental health.
Your Tongue May Not Talk But it Does Say A Lot!
From geographical tongue that literally has what appears to be a map of the world printed on the tongue to white tongue that can indicate an overgrowth of oral bacteria due to yeast or certain illnesses. Diets that are high in sugars and simple carbohydrates may have their cover blown by the condition of the tongue – and habits such as smoking and alcohol consumption are quickly exposed by the health of the tongue and oral tissues. Sores and irritated patches on the tongue and other tissue need immediate attention from a dentist or medical doctor to rule out the presence of oral cancer.
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