One of the most overlooked aspects of our health is our teeth. Our dental health is fairly easy to neglect because, after all, the consequences and symptoms of unhealthy teeth don’t often show immediately, and there are other parts of our bodies that are more highlighted in terms of being healthy and taking care of ourselves.
But having good teeth is so much more than just improving our appearance; it also has a lot of health benefits. Here are the physical, mental, and emotional perks of having healthy teeth.
What does it mean to have good dental health?
Having healthy teeth entails the following:
- Having healthy gums means that the gums are pink and firm. One of the marks of healthy teeth is that they’re firmly attached to the gums and are intact.
- There’s a neutral to pleasant breath smell.
- Dental strength, which means no cavities and other dental diseases or disorders. Healthy teeth also don’t break too easily. Good alignment is also one of the marks of healthy teeth.
- Healthy oral tissues mean the insides of the mouth are moist and pink and do not have the propensity for tenderness, thrush, and other painful sores.
Here are some physical benefits of having healthy teeth:
- A study found that those who had more than 20 teeth were more likely to survive over 70 years old. This suggests that taking care of our teeth to ensure that they don’t decay over time can help us live longer.
- Having healthy teeth helps reduce the risk of specific diseases because good teeth are preceded by healthy gums, which prevents gum disease. Gum disease is known for causing inflammation to our bodies’ blood vessels, which stop the blood supply to our brain, which can lead to a stroke.
- Some research also suggests that gum disease can help raise one’s blood sugar levels, which can help cause diabetes.
- Good oral health can also mean a healthier pregnancy because it can help prevent periodontal disease. Some studies indicated that expecting mothers with poor dental and oral health are at higher risk of low birth weight babies and even premature labor.
- Healthy teeth can also help prevent other types of cardiovascular disease as well as oral cancer.
For many years, experts have found a link between mental health and oral health. One of the symptoms of chronic depression is having a hard time doing menial and everyday things like brushing one’s teeth. When depressed people neglect dental hygiene, which then results in poor oral health, their mental health worsens, which becomes an unhealthy cycle.
This is why researchers suggest that mental health clinicians and dentists work together to help provide support to mental health sufferers who need help with their dental hygiene. While having good teeth is not the only solution for people suffering from mood disorders and other mental illnesses, it can certainly provide some help.
Mental health and emotional health are different, but they are closely tied. Here are some emotional benefits of having good oral health:
- Having good teeth can help boost one’s confidence and self-esteem, and thus the ability to put themselves out there whether in relationships, work, or trying something new. This is because those who have good teeth are more likely to have big smiles, and those who suffer from dental issues like crooked or decaying teeth will feel more self-conscious and tend to keep to themselves and not try at all.
- A university study found that having white and aligned teeth makes people more attractive. Evenly-spaced teeth can act as an ornament for people in that we tend to feel more confident about showing our pearly whites through smiling.
- Having good teeth also makes us look younger. Perhaps a good alternative to botox and other anti-aging techniques is taking care of our dental health.
The Bottom Line
These are the multiple perks of having good dental health. This is why experiencing excellent orthodontics and visiting your dentist regularly is crucial to keeping your teeth and gums healthy. While good dental hygiene, like proper brushing and flossing, is a good way to keep our teeth healthy, we will also benefit greatly from professionals’ advice.
Plenty of research has shown the correlation between looking good and feeling good. If you want to find ways to care for yourself, you should consider showing your teeth some tender loving care. It’s not just our appearance that will benefit from having good dental health but also our minds, hearts, and bodies too.