The Smile

A Gateway to Health and Happiness

As a full service dentist, focusing on cos-
metics, I often find myself caring more about my patient’s teeth and oral health than they do. I have found there are many reasons people may not value their oral health.  A few common reasons are; fixing dental problems can be expensive and insurance often falls short, treatments can be uncomfortable, and people take their teeth for granted until something goes wrong.

So how is your smile a Gateway to Health and Happiness? Your mouth is the main and easiest access point for entry into your body.  It is teeming with bacteria that left uncontrolled can cause a myriad of problems for the teeth and gums. Your immune system is constantly battling to protect you, but neglect can put too much pressure on the system and failures will occur. In addition, those same oral bacteria left unchecked, have been linked to diseases and pathology deeper in the body.  Research has linked poor oral health to the following diseases and more:

  • Endocarditis- Can occur when bacteria from your mouth gain access to your bloodstream and infect the heart.
  • Heart Disease- Research suggests that heart disease, clogged arteries, and stroke might be linked to oral bacteria.
  • Periodontitis (Gum Disease) has been linked to premature birth and low birth weight when uncontrolled in expectant mothers.
  • Diabetes- Gum disease is more frequent and severe among diabetics. It appears people with gum disease have a harder time controlling their blood sugar levels.
  • Osteoporosis- Osteoporosis has been linked to oral bone and tooth loss.
  • Alzheimer’s disease-Tooth loss before age 35 might be a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Other conditions- Many other diseases and medications affect or are affected by oral health.

Beyond keeping you healthy, your smile says more about you than anything else in a first impression. Check out these statistics from a perception study by Kelton Global Research and published by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry and Invisalign.

  • 48% of people report that the smile is the most memorable feature when meeting someone for the first time while only 25% find memorable what was said.
  • Those with straight teeth are 21% more likely to be seen as happy, 47% more likely to be viewed as being healthy and 38% more likely to be perceived as smart.
  • 73% or respondents would be more likely to trust someone with a nice smile than someone with a good job, outfit, or car.
  • Research has shown a perception of people with straight teeth to be 45% more likely than those with crooked teeth to get a job when competing with someone who has a similar skill set and experience. They are also seen as 58% more likely to be successful, as well as 57% more likely to be wealthy.
  • 38% would consider not going on a second date with someone who has crooked teeth while only 23% would do the same to someone who still lives with his or her parents.

The life benefits of a beautiful smile and healthy teeth and gums are much greater than you may understand. Here are a few tips to help you get and keep your mouth in tip-top shape.

  • If you have discolored, crooked, or unsightly teeth find a solution to improve them. You may think nobody notices or that it doesn’t bug you, but time and again I have been told how much happier a person is when they are no longer trying to hide unsightly or misaligned teeth. I am also amazed by how much better my patients care for their teeth when they are happy with their smile.
  • Spend at least 2 minutes brushing morning and night.
  • Floss at a minimum once per day, ideally before bed.
  • Get regular checkups and cleanings by a registered Hygienist to ensure proper care and diagnosis of problems that can be fixed while they are small and easy.
  • Don’t use your teeth for anything but eating.
  • Replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months.

If you have questions or concerns about your oral health, you dislike the look of your smile, or have poor functioning teeth, please call Boise Smile Design to schedule a complimentary consultation. 208-906-0933.