Everyone likes to have the freedom to express themselves and live life as they please. But it’s still good to be aware of the consequences of your lifestyle choices so that you don’t suffer any unexpected hardships.
Here are six lifestyle choices and everyday habits that can have surprisingly dangerous effects on your oral health.
Smoking can reduce blood circulation to your oral tissues. It also slows down the healing process in your body. Tobacco use can also cause you dry mouth. These factors combined create a prime environment for infections to thrive inside of your mouth.
Gum disease is a severe bacterial infection that can cause the tissues around your teeth to break down. This results in gum recession and potentially even tooth loss. Smoking increases your risk of gum disease by making it easier for the disease to progress at a faster rate.
There’s nothing wrong with a couple of alcoholic drinks now and then. But frequent consumption brings your mouth into steady contact with alcohol. Alcohol is very drying to oral tissues, and cavity-causing bacteria thrive in such environments.
Additionally, frequent alcohol exposure increases your risk of developing oral or throat cancer. You should pay particular attention to getting regular oral cancer screenings with your dentist.
Medical researchers have discovered several negative health impacts associated with energy drinks, and one of those is an increased risk of tooth decay. Energy drinks are loaded with carbonation, acid and sugar, which are all terrible for tooth enamel.
A habit of consuming energy drinks can thin out your teeth, opening them up to attacks by cavity-causing germs.
Oral jewellery makes a statement, subtle or bold, and represents your autonomy over your body.
But this form of self-expression comes with a price you should consider.
Your mouth is meant to consist of limited structures that include your teeth and tongue. When you put extra objects in there in the form of jewellery, they equal extra surfaces for bacteria and debris to collect on.
If you don’t keep your oral jewellery clean, the pierced sites can quickly get infected or transmit bacteria to other parts of the mouth. What’s more, hard posts can wear against your teeth and rub away the enamel creating a sensitive worn spot.
There’s also the risk of injury. If you get hit in the mouth in an accident, a sharp plastic or metal piercing can stab your gums. That’s not considering biting down on it accidentally and cracking a tooth in half (it happens fairly often!)
Vegan or Vegetarian Diet
Like many others, you might have chosen the vegan or vegetarian lifestyle as a reflection of your values concerning the environment. Or, simply to filter out other types of foods from your diet.
That lifestyle choice is noble, but if it’s not done correctly, it could be disastrous for your teeth. With your food options being a bit more limited, you might be prone to snacking on “safe” foods that are high in sugar or empty carbs. Such items increase your risk of tooth decay.
Smokeless tobacco has been linked to oral cancer. Lesions typically develop in the soft tissue that’s been exposed to tobacco over years of use. Smokeless tobacco contains strong chemicals and agents that alter cheek, lip, tongue and gum tissue on the cellular level.
How are your current lifestyle choices affecting your dental health? Find out by scheduling a visit to the dentist for a checkup.