Obesity, defined as a condition characterized by the excessive accumulation and storage of fat in the body, is a serious issue. Americans are facing and attempting to battle it on a daily basis. Roughly 31% of our adult population is classified as obese! Unfortunately, obesity can lead to multiple medical issues and conditions, such as diabetes, hypertension, and respiratory problems – to name just a few.
Poor Health, Bad Teeth
Your diet directly affects your teeth, mouth, and overall health. A handful of recent studies suggest that poor oral health may be directly linked to the likelihood of obesity. The Obesity Action Coalition stated that “individuals affected by obesity have more oral health problems than other individuals in general,” such as “higher tooth decay levels, more missing teeth and [are greatly lacking] required dental fillings.”
While obesity may not necessarily create bad teeth, some of the causes and side effects of obesity lead to a greater risk of periodontal (gum) disease. Some studies even point to insulin resistance as the regulating connection between gum disease and obesity.
The greatest deterrents for negative oral health side effects caused by the drugs and side effects associated with obesity are maintaining a healthy lifestyle and, most of all, regular dental check-ups.
If you are like the many patients dealing with missing teeth, tooth decay, dry mouth, and other poor oral health side effects, know that there are affordable options to restore your oral health.
For children, please explore our pediatric dental services. Yes, we do see adults as well. In fact, many of our patients are families! Please explore our dental services to find solutions to your oral health issues.
Healthier Children Means Eliminating Obesity
Parents, it begins with you. If one parent is obese, there is a 50% chance that the child will also become obese. In the past few decades, the amount of obese American children has doubled!
Poor nutrition and eating habits have and continue to take over the health of too many young people. Thankfully, there is a “green” and health movement that has really taken root in many areas of the United States. Start your healthy lifestyle today!
Our goal as dentists is to help you to have the tools and knowledge to attain the strong, beautiful smile that you deserve. Children are the windows to the future, and their oral health (in addition to their overall health) should be a top priority from a young age.
Keeping a Healthy Weight and Smile
- Drink lots of water to keep hydrated.
- Skip the sugary drinks and sweets.
- Avoid junk food.
- Get some exercise. Play sports or just get outside and run around!
- Follow through with a regular oral hygiene routine.
- Floss and brush at least twice daily.
- Visit your dentist for check-ups.
Drinks like fruit juice, energy drinks, and soda all have a high amount of sugar and harmful acid in them. If you regularly drink these sugary beverages, try to replace them with water or less sugary drinks. The same goes for candy and junk food. Even if you or your child isn’t eating candy, certain types of junk food have enough added sugars to do the same amount of damage as sugar sweetened beverages.
In the United States, it can be hard to do. Compared to the rest of the world, a 2016 study found that Americans consume more sugar per capita than any other country. Even though avoiding sugar is a challenge, it can help you reduce your weight, improve your health, and keep your teeth bright and healthy. So, even though it’s hard, your smile and your body will thank you!
Taking Care of Your Teeth
The Ins-And-Outs of Brushing
When you’re brushing and flossing, make sure to use a flouride toothpaste. If you’re not aware, flouride is an essential element that the human body needs. It promotes overall oral health, reduces the risk of cavities, and strengthens enamel.
Also, you should always use a soft bristle tooth brush. It might not seem like much, but the problem with harder bristle toothbrushes is they can actually wear away your enamel and push back your gums.
You should also practice proper brushing techniques. Never brush back and forth across your teeth, instead make tiny circle motions. With a soft-bristle toothbrush, your teeth might not feel as clean as they would, so you will need to spend more time brushing your teeth.
More time with proper brushing techniques will actually clean your teeth better than a quick brush from a harder brush. The gentle stimulation from the soft brush will also encourage your gums to stay strong and prevent gum disease.
Floss Your Teeth
Flossing is even more essential than brushing your teeth. Those tiny spaces between your teeth and gums can harbor plaque and bacteria and let cavities grow where your toothbrush can’t reach. Additionally, the more often you can reach below the gum line to clean it, the more your teeth can stay healthy. Flossing also prevents gum disease and if you find that your gums bleed, then flossing will help your gums get better.
What to Do About Obesity and Your Teeth
Does obesity run in your family? Are you worried about your family’s health? A good balance of healthy eating and exercise can make all the difference in living a better life. Also keeping those pearly whites in good shape can significantly boost your overall health.
Have you had your routine check-up recently? If not, request your next appointment with us using our online form, or feel free to give us a call!