Our team at Bayou Dental Group is telling you about three changes you can make today to lower your risk for gum disease in honor of Gum Disease Awareness month.
We’re also here to help you maintain healthy teeth and gums as your trusted dental team in Monroe, LA.
With routine dental cleanings and exams and our gum disease prevention, you can keep smiling for a lifetime!
#1: Find Healthy Ways To Deal With Stress
Stress affects all of us. It’s how we deal with it that can indicate which people maintain better health.
If poorly managed, stress can become a chronic problem that will inevitably weaken your immune system.
Without a strong immune system, you can’t fight off infection and other systemic health problems.
This puts you at a greater risk for developing gum disease.
Finding healthy ways to cope with stress can keep that from happening.
Here are some ways you can reduce stress and its impact on your oral health:
*Say No – Learn to say no to time consuming obligations that add little to no value to your life or pile on more stress to your life.
*Make Time For Yourself – Everyone needs time for hobbies and interests that help them escape from everyday responsibilities once in a while.
*Clear Your Mind – You probably have a smartphone on you at all times, which means you’re constantly plugged in to the rest of the world. Being available 24/7 takes it toll on you, so take a few minutes in the morning or at night for meditation, deep breathing, or a few yoga poses.
*Talk To Someone – A close friend or, if necessary, a certified counselor are great sounding boards when you need to work through stressful situations.
#2: Improve Your Diet
A well-balanced diet is best for your health in general. It’s especially important if you want strong teeth and gums.
Again, a well-functioning immune system is a great defense against gum disease infection. That requires the right fuel so it can do what it was designed to do.
To give your body the nutrients it needs to protect your oral health, include immunity-boosting foods such as:
-Red Bell Peppers
#3: Kick Your Smoking Habit
If you’re a smoker, you’re twice as likely to develop gum disease than a nonsmoker.
The increased risk can be caused by a couple of factors.
For one thing, smoking weakens your immunity, which we’ve already connected to developing gum disease.
Another problem is that smoking decreases your saliva production, which is why smokers have more tartar on their teeth than nonsmokers. Without the protection of saliva, your teeth aren’t as protected against bacterial plaque.
Set Yourself Up For Success
Change isn’t always easy. But as Teddy Roosevelt once pointed out, nothing worth having comes easy.
A healthy mouth and a healthy body are both worth having and, thus, require ongoing effort and dedication.
That doesn’t mean you have to make radical changes all at once.
When it comes to your diet, stress level, and nicotine addiction, you’ll be more successful if you start by setting small goals.
Instead of quitting cold turkey, for example, quit smoking little by little. Taper off so, eventually, you’ll feel more comfortable taking that final step to living tobacco free.
Rather than drastically restricting all sugary snacks right out of the gate, start by adding healthier foods to your diet each day. Feeling deprived is a recipe for failure when it comes to changing your diet, so adding rather than restricting is a helpful approach.
To reduce stress, it’s not a good idea to suddenly shake up your routine with a string of new practices.
That’s pretty stressful, which is counterproductive!
Instead, commit to giving yourself just fifteen minutes each day to help you relax, clear your mind, and decompress.
Make An Appointment
If you’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed at the thought of change, just remember that you don’t have to do it alone.
Dr. Finley and our skilled team are here to support you in your commitment to achieving better health and lowering your risk for gum disease.
We can start by making sure your teeth and gums are healthy with a dental cleaning and exam every six months.
If we spot warning signs of potential setbacks along the way, we can address them right away so your oral health stays on track.