There are very few people in the world that actually enjoy visiting the dentist for an annual cleaning. No matter how nice that squeaky clean feeling in your mouth is afterwards, it’s completely normal to just want to get it over with.
During each visit to your family dentist, you probably hear the same things over and over again. Statements like “Avoid candy and soda” and “Try and floss more often” are common, even expected as you’re sitting in the exam room. It’s almost as if your dentist has a spiel that he has memorized that is given to each and every patient.
But did you know that there are often a few things that your dentist is thinking, but not actually saying? Here are the 5 secrets that your dentist is keeping to himself as he or she examines your pearly whites.
It’s very clear that you’re a smoker.
Smoking cigars and cigarettes is one of the worst things you can do for your oral health. Actually, it’s one of the worst things you can do for your health in general. And guess what, even if you’ve become a champ at hiding your smoking habit, your dentist can tell whether or not you’re a smoker.
It doesn’t matter how many mints you pop or how many times you swish mouthwash around your mouth, the damage caused by tobacco is apparent to your dentist and dental hygienist. Tobacco has harmful effects on the entire mouth, everything from the teeth to the gum tissues, even the tongue.
Stop brushing so hard!
You might think that the harder you brush, the cleaner your mouth will be. This is not the case at all. In fact, brushing too hard cause a lot of oral damage. It speeds up the breakdown of tooth enamel and can cause the gums to bleed. This is something that your dentist might tell you, but much of the time it is swept under the rug and ignored.
There’s a solution to that bad breath of yours.
If you’re experiencing bad breath, there’s a reason. Just as a stranger wouldn’t comment on the stale stench of your breath, your dentist is also unlikely to mention it. Bad breath can be a symptom of a larger issue, like dehydration.
An easy fix is to drink more water throughout the day. Don’t just assume that mouthwash will fix the problem – mouthwash can actually have an adverse effect and decrease the amount of saliva produced by the mouth.
How much candy do you eat?
Just as dentists can easily detect caffeine addicts and avid smokers, they can also tell when you are consuming too much sugar. Processed sugars are horrible for the teeth, especially when it comes to acidic sugary beverages like Coca-Cola and other sodas.
There’s more to oral health than just brushing and flossing.
Dentists focus so much on the importance of brushing and flossing, but they often fail to mention the importance of a healthy diet. Eating foods that promote oral health has actually been proven to reverse cavities. Try to incorporate more healthy fats – like fish and grass-fed meat – into your daily diet.