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Although the average American’s oral health has improved substantially since the beginning of the 20th century, our habits still leave much to be desired. To be frank, the upward trend of people keeping a majority of their natural teeth to the end of their lifetime has more to do with fluoridated water and fluoride toothpaste than changes in habits. Today, let’s look at some crazy oral health statistics.
Crazy Oral Health Statistics
You may actually be surprised how common poor oral hygiene is and how easy it is to fix. Let’s look at some of the craziest statistics.
26% of Adults in the United States have Untreated Tooth Decay
Tooth decay occurs when the bacteria in your mouth have enough time to consume food particles left on your teeth and gums. The byproduct of this consumption are acids that eat away at your protective enamel. Without the intervention of oral hygiene, these acids will burn through the enamel, creating a cavity.
46% of Adults Over the Age of 30 Show Signs of Gum Disease
Gum disease is caused by bacteria underneath the edge of your gums. Those bacteria irritate the gum tissue, causing inflammation and the typical redness associated with gum disease. The easiest way to prevent gum disease is daily flossing. If you aren’t sure how to safely floss around your gums, check out the American Dental Association’s official video guide to flossing.
Alcohol and Cigarettes Put You At a Higher Risk of Developing Oral Cancer
At this point, the average person has a passable understanding of how the carcinogens in cigarette smoke increase their risk of cancer. However, you may not know that heavy alcohol consumption can also increase your risk of developing oral cancer. Alcohol can act as an irritant, damaging cells more frequently than normal. The increased frequency in cell repair actually increases the odds that you will develop dangerous mutations.
Certain Health Conditions May Harm Your Oral Health
Unfortunately, there are a number of chronic health conditions that could make you more vulnerable to tooth decay and gum disease. Diabetes, Hepatitis C, and heart disease are just a few of the most common conditions with these kinds of complications. However, you should always inform your periodontist in Los Angeles of any health conditions you have to ensure you receive the best treatment possible.
31% of Adults Brush Less than Twice a Day
No one is perfect. But a stunning percentage of people in the United States frequently drop the ball for their oral health. Brushing your teeth remains a necessary part of your hygiene routine. Why? It helps your mouth to rid itself of food particles and harmful bacteria. It also reduces the amount of bacteria that you swallow, providing better protection for your body.
Technically, your dentist would like you to brush your teeth immediately after eating, but the majority of us can’t manage to do that 3-5 times per day. Brushing twice a day is a happy medium that gives your teeth about 12 hours of protection as long as you’re using a reputable toothpaste.
When These Statistics Affect You
If you are one of the millions of people struggling with tooth decay or gum disease, don’t hesitate to talk to your local periodontist. Less than perfect oral hygiene is fairly typical, and they’re well aware that certain conditions put people at higher risk. When you go into the office for periodontal treatment in LA, they have no desire to just you. Your periodontist is a professional, and they are only there to heal you and provide tools for moving forward. Just be brave and ask for the help you need in order to reach a healthier tomorrow.