Creating Healthier Smiles Together
As we continue to spend more time together at home, you and your family may have created similar routines — from sharing meals, relaxation time, and health and fitness routines. Keep reading for ways you can improve your smiles together:
Can Dental Conditions Be Hereditary?
The first step in improving your family’s oral health is knowing what conditions you are predisposed for. Though many patients know that their eye color or height came from their parents, they often don’t realize that many of the most common dental issues can stem from genetics as well.
Also known as periodontal disease, almost 30% of our population can be at risk for developing gum disease due to genetics. Additionally, your genetics play a large part in how early you will develop periodontal disease as well as how extreme your symptoms are.
From sensitive and inflamed gums to bone loss around certain teeth, this condition can affect your oral health in the long run without proper care. With early diagnosis, your dentist will be able to treat your smile and help protect your dental health.
Cleft Lip and Cleft Palate
Cleft lip and cleft palate are common birth defects where the sides of the lip and the roof of a child’s mouth don’t fuse together properly. Experts believe that most cases of cleft lip and cleft palate are caused by genetic and environmental factors.
While a child of parents who had a cleft lip or palate is at risk for this condition, children of Asian, Latino, and Native American descent are also at a heightened risk. Cleft palate or lip can cause feeding issues, speech impairments, and further dental concerns.
About 53,260 people are estimated to get oral cavity or oropharyngeal cancer in 2020. While a patient can develop oral cancer from unhealthy habits, such as smoking, both of these deadly diseases are hereditary. They are also more than twice as common in men as in women.
Oral cancer can affect a patient’s tongue, tonsils, gums, and other parts of the mouth. If you have a family history of oral cancer, it’s essential to have routine exams during your dental appointments to check for masses.
If your dentist tells you that you need braces, you’re most likely not the first in your family. Your genetic makeup plays an important role in the development of your jaw — which, in turn, affects the alignment of your smile. Patients may also develop an overbite, underbite, or large gaps between teeth.
What Age is Right for a First Dentist Appointment?
Now that you know what dental conditions to look out for, it’s time to think about visiting the dentist. Watching your kids growing up makes it seem like they hit a new milestone every day. From their first hair cut to their first dental appointment — it’s essential to plan for these ‘firsts’ and make sure your child follows the right schedule for them.
Preparing for Your Child’s First Appointment
The best time for your child to visit the dentist is after their first tooth appears or before their first birthday — whichever occurs first. The reason for this? As soon as our teeth come in, they’re exposed to foods that can cause cavities and other dental issues if left untreated.
Read More: How To Tell If Your Child Has a Cavity
Calming Your Child’s Anxieties
We understand that this is a new experience for you both, so if your child cries or wiggles — we understand! Our team is here to help you both. Dr. Neal will examine your little one’s jaw and teeth to make sure they’re forming correctly. We’ll also check for any mouth injuries or cavities so we can resolve those if necessary.
Dental Care Tips for the Whole Family
Dental care doesn’t stop at your cleanings and check-ups — there’s plenty of work to be done at home to protect your smile.
Improve Your Diet
Some foods are rich in vitamins and minerals, which help to strengthen our teeth and fight disease; and there are also some that simply act as natural floss, such as apples and celery. Some choices that are great for not only your overall health but specifically for your dental health include:
- Calcium-rich foods help to strengthen your teeth.
- Phosphorus-rich foods protect your teeth from cavity-causing acids.
- Foods rich in vitamin C fortify your smile and ward off disease.
- Foods rich in folic acid promote the growth of new cells.
Form a Dental Hygiene Routine
Brushing your teeth often, especially after eating, removes all debris from your mouth and ensures that your teeth are being properly cleaned. Here are some other ways to improve your smile:
- Choose the right dental tools.
- Brush for 2-3 minutes per session.
- Floss at least once daily.
- Add mouthwash to the mix.
Read More: Dental Hygiene Tips for Kids
Visit the Dentist Regularly
Many of our patients only visit the dentist when something hurts or feels wrong — but one of the most vital parts of your dental health care is going to the dentist regularly. This includes receiving routine x-rays and regular cleanings. Preventative dental care can also help indicate minor issues early on before they become more severe.
Family Dentistry in Frisco
At Frisco's Dentists, Dr. Neal provides dental care for the whole family, including the elderly and children. In fact, Dr. Neal sees children as young as two for their general dentistry needs.
To book your first appointment with our team, contact Frisco's Dentists at: (972) 200-0656