Women’s Dental Health
It is important to have good dental hygiene, and even more important for women’s dental health. Hormonal changes throughout a woman’s life can increase the risk of tooth and gum diseases. Hormones can fluctuate during puberty, menopause, pregnancy and breast feeding. These life stages can cause swelling and changes to the gums. During these times women are susceptible to mouth bacteria causing inflammation, and it is more likely for bacteria to thrive.
Medications such as the oral contraceptive pill and hormone replacement therapy can also play a role in oral health. If oral hygiene is poor, plaque can form into calculus, leading to further gum damage and causing gingivitis. Untreated, it can lead to an advance stage of gum disease known as periodontitis. Periodontitis is a major cause of tooth loss in people older than 30 years of age.
Prevention of Tooth and Gum Disease
There are a number of things you can do or avoid doing to help reduce the build up of plaque in your mouth. Your dentist may suggest the following handy tips, including:
- Brushing two or three times daily (with a fluoridated adult toothpaste) and flossing once a day
- Choosing healthy foods and avoiding high sugar foods such as sticky sweets, chocolate, cake or biscuits, as they promote growth of plaque forming bacteria
- Avoid snacking but instead stick to regular meals as snacking increases plaque development
- Drinking mainly water or milk and avoiding adding sugar to coffee and tea. If you must add sugar, rinse your mouth with water afterwards
- Chewing sugarless gum after eating will help stimulate saliva and reduce the risk of plaque and therefore decay
- Having regular check-ups and professional teeth cleaning at the dental office
If plaque is allowed to sit on the teeth without being removed, it will harden into calculus. Once calculus is present, your tooth brush and general home care will not be suitable to remove it as it is too hard. To remove this hard build up, you will need to come in for a check up and professional clean where the dentist will use specialised dental instruments to clean your teeth. Regular visits are recommended to keep up to date with any changes that may occur in your body and mouth, and to assist in prevention of gingivitis and periodontitis.
If you are having troublesome symptoms with teeth or gums, or are overdue for a dental check-up, please call Salamanca Dental on (03) 62888070, contact us here, or book online using the button at the top of this page.
We look forward to seeing you soon and remember to… smile like you mean it!