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Genetics and Oral Health – Your Dentist in Fort Walton Weighs in

March 20, 2018

Filed under: Uncategorized — drhodges @ 11:41 am

multi colored dna double helixThe field of dentistry is constantly evolving and changing as dentists continue to search for the best ways to deliver care and maintain oral health. Leading the charge, researchers have been studying the possible connections between your genetic make-up and your oral health. This leaves us to explore many avenues and other questions in this brief post, which is why your dentist in Fort Walton will weigh in with his expert input. Continue reading to further investigate these new discoveries in the world of dentistry and learn what you can do to ensure your oral health.

4 Conditions Influenced by Your Genetic Make-up

Researchers have discovered that you may be more predisposed to develop the following issues based on your genetic make-up:

  • Periodontal (Gum) Disease – Studies show that up to 30 percent of the population may be genetically predisposed to gum disease. This is a condition that involves inflammation of the gums and is related to tooth decay.
  • Tooth Decay – Your predisposition to developing cavities may be based on genes called beta-defensin. They are variations found in mammals that act as antibodies. Depending on the specific amount you secrete, you could be more or less susceptible to decay.
  • Oral Cancer – Responsible for claiming thousands of lives annually, a predisposition for developing oral cancer can be influenced by your genetics.

Are You Held Hostage by Your Genes?

Once you discover that your genes carry a specific pattern, you may feel that you are doomed to suffer from certain conditions. The reality, though, is that you always have the power of will and choice. That means that you can make a decision to break any cycles of dysfunction in your family’s oral health by incorporating lifestyle changes. As a result, you will create the type of environment (epigenetics) that better controls how certain genes are expressed.

Here are some simple ways to do that:

  • Semi Annual Appointments – Visit your dentist semi-annually for cleanings and checkups. This allows you and your trusted professional to catch any developing issues before they mushroom into bigger problems.
  • Oral Health – Practicing excellent oral health plays a huge role in creating the type of environment you want in your mouth. When you remove the harmful bacteria that cause plaque and raise your pH level through brushing and flossing your teeth, you are taking control of your situation.
  • Eating Healthier – The way you eat plays another key role in your oral health. Thus, if you’re more predisposed to tooth decay or gum disease, which are fed by bacteria, you can control the expression of these genes by denying the bacteria what they want most – sugar.

Your genetics can’t be denied, but it’s reassuring to know that you are not held as a helpless hostage them. The proactive steps you take today to maintain your oral health will paint a brighter tomorrow for you.

So reach out to your local dentist today to schedule your initial visit!

About the Author

With over 15 years of experience practicing dentistry, Dr. Benjamin Hodges offers his patients expert and compassionate care. He proudly serves the Fort Walton community from Benjamin J. Hodges, DMD Family & Cosmetic Dentistry and can be reached for more information through his website.

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