Oh yes, I am going there. Dental Health is too important for me to not go there. It’s is not just about having a beautiful smile. For many, the most common reason to see a dentist is because they are in pain. But, did you know that poor dental health has been linked to both heart and mental health issues?
So, you’ve gone through most your day with what started out as just a little twinge. Then, you chugged down that Slurpee from 7-11 and next thing you know you spend the next several nights unable to sleep. The throb so bad you want to cry. Perhaps you even did so in the privacy of your own bathroom? Still, the pain eventually went away and you went on with your life. You don’t need a dentist. They are too expensive, anyways. You survived. That is, until the next time. You finally give in and go see that dreaded dentist and get it taken cared of. Goodby pain!
Your friendly neighborhood dentist probably advised you to brush your teeth at least twice a day and come in for regular cleanings every 6-12 months. The advice may vary a bit from dentist to dentist, but all agree on daily brushing and professional cleaning. I know it is tempting to believe they are only telling you to come back “to make a buck” and while that is partly true (Dentists have bills to pay, after all) most got into the field because they realized how important good dental health was to each and every person. Not just for a pretty smile and easy self-confidence, either.
While this piece is in no way aimed at convincing smokers to stop smoking, proper dental hygiene and regular dentist visits become even more important for those that smoke. Smoking hastens tooth decay, promotes bacteria growth, and can put you on the fast track of needing a full set of dentures. Ask me how I know. Asking? No? I’ll tell you anyways. I’ve worn dentures since April 0f 2004. By the time I finally had all my teeth removed, I was so sick from a blood-borne infection that originated in my mouth I was given a month to live. I am not exaggerating here. I had so many health issues because of the state of my dental health is was literally killing me. Finances are what kept me from proper care, but that is an entirely different topic I might cover another day. A quick note of sincere “Thanks” go to my mother-in-law for saving my life. She paid for what I needed.
I know it can be all too easy for people to dismiss proper dental hygiene and care as something for the vain or those who want a pretty smile. However, I am here to tell you it goes well beyond feeling good about yourself. It goes deeply into feeling good period. While a healthy smile can be a prettier smile, what is vital is that we should not be forced to live with pain and poor health because it happens to be in our mouth. Don’t wait until you hurt so bad you can not sleep and miss work. Don’t put it off so long you reach the point that you are losing most, or all, of your teeth. Good dental health prevents a host of other health issues. How you achieve that will be a struggle for some, but a struggle I encourage you to take on.
Until the next one.