Our health can be affected by various diseases, infections, and viruses. Moreover, it is important to understand that you are the only person that is responsible for your well being. When it comes to oral health, many people refuse to visit the dentist’s office. Despite this fact, there are four oral health problems that shouldn’t be neglected.
Oral Health Problems
1. Tooth decay
Tooth decay (cavities) is considered one of the most common oral health problems in the US. It develops when the plague on our teeth mixes with sugar or food particles. This mix creates a nutritional environment for bacteria.
These bacteria produce acids that soften and ruin tooth enamel. You shouldn’t think that only children or people with sweet teeth are able to develop tooth decay. This condition can be triggered by excessive wear and tear, enamel erosion, certain medications, and aging.
That’s why it is important to brush your teeth twice a day, floss your teeth once a day, and regularly visit your dentist. Moreover, replacing high sugar snacks and drinks with healthy foods can also prevent tooth decay. If you have signs of cavities, it is better to visit your dentist as soon as possible. Prevent foods that damage your teeth.
2. Gum disease
Gum disease (periodontal disease) is an infection that occurs on the gums near the teeth. This condition is considered one of the most common causes of tooth loss among adults. Moreover, researchers claim that dum disease is connected with heart disease.
Periodontal disease can develop at any age but people after their 30s are more prone to develop it. Dry mouth, diabetes, and smoking increase your risk to develop this condition. The most common gum disease symptoms include:
- Bad breath
- Swollen and tender gums
- Tooth sensitivity
- Pain during eating
You can prevent the development of gum disease with the help of regular dental health examinations, brushing your teeth twice a day, and flossing once a day. If you have noticed any symptoms of gum disease, you should immediately visit your dentist in order to get timely and proper treatment.
3. Oral cancer
Oral cancer(1) is a serious condition that affects many people all over the world. Despite the fact that oral cancer can develop in people after their 40s, it can affect younger people as well. This condition can be caused by many things like smoking, alcohol addiction, chewing tobacco, and human papillomavirus. The most common symptoms of oral cancer are:
- Sores and lumps in the mouth
- Changed bite
- Difficulties with chewing
- Pain in the jaw and tongue
Ask your doctor about an oral cancer exam if it is not included in your regular dental examination. It is important to understand that it is much easier to treat oral cancer on the initial stages. Make an appointment with your dentist if you have noticed any signs of oral cancer.
4. Mouth sores
Mouth sores can be divided into several types depending on their cause. However, all of them can cause discomfort and even painful sensations in the mouth. It is also important to know that if mouth sores don’t disappear within a couple of weeks, it is better to visit your dentist for treatment.
The most common mouth sores are canker sores. They usually appear on the oral tissues inside the mouth and are not contagious. These sores usually disappear on their own in two weeks.
The main cause of cold sores or fever blisters is the Herpes simplex virus. Such sores usually develop on the lips edges. You should know that they are contagious but will also disappear over time. However, the Herpes simplex virus(2) is not curable and always remains in the body.
Oral thrush (yeast infection) can also lead to mouth sores. Infants and adults that wear dentures or suffer from diabetes are more prone to get this infection.