Top 8 Dental Problems and How to Beat Them

March 11, 2009 by  
Filed under Dental Health

A great smile is always the best accessory to charm anyone. A nice set of pearly-white teeth indicates good health and hygiene. This is why proper dental care is very important. The teeth are the hardest part of the human body. However, it is not indestructible and is often prone to damage and decay. Here are the top eight common dental problems and the ways on how to beat them:

1. Tooth Decay. Statistics show that next to the common cold, tooth decay is the second most common health problem plaguing young Americans today. Food particles that remain lodged in between teeth can produce acids that can scour the tooth’s enamel. Rinsing the mouth well and using dental floss will help remove residual food particles.

2. Gum Problems. Diseases of the gums such as gingivitis and periodontitis are caused by infections in the gums surrounding the teeth. When left unchecked, gum diseases have been linked to the incidence of heart disease and strokes. Regular visits to the dentist can easily correct these problems. Proper and regular brushing can also prevent the proliferation of bacteria that cause gum infections.

3. Oral Sores. Unsightly sores in the mouth can be painful and bothersome. Cold sores, ulcers and thrush are quiet common and generally disappear on their own. Often they are caused by overexposure to the sun, fever, and stress. Symptoms can be relieved by using lip balms and taking Vitamin C. Relaxation to relieve stress may also help control recurrent mouth sores.

4. Bad Breath. Bad breath is often a sign of dry mouth or the presence of bacteria in the mouth. Persistent bad breath may indicate gum disease or even more serious health problems that require professional evaluation. Bad breath is very embarrassing and many people often resort to using mouthwashes. However, mouthwashes can only provide temporary relief by masking the odor. In order to cure bad breath permanently it is important to address the root of the problem.

5. Sensitive Teeth. Many people suffer from sensitive teeth making it very painful for them to take cold beverages. Often, even brushing and flossing becomes painful such that oral hygiene is compromised. Fortunately, there are now several products including toothpastes which are specifically designed to counter sensitive teeth.

6. Crooked Teeth. There are many reasons why crooked teeth develop. Usually, the mouth is too small to contain the teeth resulting in overlapping. Sometimes, malformations in the jawbone cause overbites and underbites. These are usually inherited traits and there is nothing much to prevent them from happening in the first place. Fortunately, modern dental and orthodontic care can correct these problems. Tooth braces and retainers are usually used to realign teeth. Sometimes, removing one or two teeth can relieve the overcrowding and allow better teeth alignment.

7. Stained Teeth. Smokers and heavy coffee drinkers usually have problems with their teeth turning yellowish or brown. People exposed to certain medications like tetracycline antibiotics when they were younger also often develop discolored teeth. There are over-the-counter teeth whiteners now available. However, these products should be used with caution because most of these whiteners are nothing more than abrasives that may erode tooth enamel. The key to preventing stained teeth is to abstain from smoking and drinking coffee and other similar beverages in moderation.

8. Oral Cancer. Although less known than other common cancers, more than 300,000 Americans are diagnosed with oral cancer each year. Fortunately, when detected early, prognosis is generally good with oral cancer patients. To ensure early cancer detection, persistent sores and gum infections should immediately be checked by a health professional for assessment.

The dental problems mentioned above are the ones experienced by most people today. With proper dental advice and practice, these dental problems can be avoided all together. Thus, it is necessary to have regular dental check-ups for medical guidance.