While some people work hard to keep their teeth and gums healthy, others don’t do much for their oral health and yet seem to skate by with wonderful teeth. How is this possible? Studies show that genetics play an important role in your oral health—perhaps even more than your environment or your diet. Unfortunately, we can’t pick the genes that were given to us, but we can choose to have healthy eating habits and take proper care of our teeth. So what influences whether or not your mouth is predisposed to cavities and is there anything you can do?
If you have overcrowded teeth, you could be putting yourself at risk for cavities. The way our teeth come in are largely influenced by genes as well, however, thanks to the prominence of orthodontic treatment, anyone can have a perfect smile. Crowded teeth are more than about aesthetics, though: those tight spaces in between your crowded teeth are perfect places for bacteria to reside. These spaces are often very difficult to get clean on a regular basis except for when visiting your dentist. Talk with your dentist to see if you could benefit from orthodontic treatment!
Soft Tooth Enamel
Tooth enamel is another composition of your mouth that’s largely influenced by genetics. The harder your enamel is, the more protected your teeth are. The softer it is, the more easily damaged your teeth are. Having soft tooth enamel isn’t something you can fix, which means you’ll need to take great care of your teeth in order to prevent cavities! Sodas and other sugary drinks are particularly damaging to your enamel, but so is hard brushing, not brushing, and other sweets.
Different Bacteria and Predisposed Taste
Did you know that some people are predisposed to like sweets? This again, is due to genetics. You may be more likely to crave sugar than others, and this could get your smile into trouble! If you are sweet on sugar, be sure to rinse your mouth with water after eating or brush gently. And as always, consume in moderation to prevent cavities!
Everyone may have the same oral bacteria, but not everyone has the same composition of these bacteria in their mouths. We usually receive the bacteria in our mouths from family members as infants, either through eating, kissing, or other contact with them. The ratio of different bacteria in our mouths could be responsible for some people getting more cavities than others. To ensure good bacteria presides your mouth, brush and floss your teeth daily, eat healthy, and stay hydrated.
Other Health Conditions
If you have a health condition such as acid reflux disease, alcoholism, or dry mouth, you could be predisposing yourself to cavities! Seek treatment for your health problems as they could be damaging your smile without your knowledge.
Remaining cavity-free is an important component of maintaining proper oral health. If you suspect you’re predisposed to cavities, talk with your dentist and do your best to keep your smile in great shape. Brush, floss, and get regular check-ups with your dentist!