July 10, 2019
You probably spend little time thinking about your teeth, but they are more interesting than you might believe. You know they are necessary for chewing, speaking, and smiling, but there are also uncommon facts about your mouth that are quite fascinating. Here are 5 fun facts you may not know about your smile from your family dentist in Southlake.
5 Fun Facts about Your Smile
- Your teeth are as unique as fingerprints.
You have heard your fingerprints are exclusive to you or that there are no two snowflakes that are the same. Your teeth are no different. In fact, they are uniquely yours, which is why dental records are often used to identify human remains. Besides your teeth, your tongue also has an individualized “print.” It is thought the tongue can be used as a forensic tool someday because of its specific features that differ from person to person.
- Enamel is the hardest part of the body.
The outer layer of your tooth visible when you smile is your enamel. It’s the hardest substance in your body made up of mostly hydroxyapatite. This allows it to protect the inner layers of your teeth from damage. Despite it being extremely strong, your enamel isn’t indestructible. The biggest threat to your enamel is tooth decay. Although 92% of adults have had at least 1 cavity in a permanent tooth, you can protect your enamel by brushing and flossing your teeth, limiting your consumption of sugar, and visiting your dentist in Southlake twice a year.
- You can remineralize your teeth
A cavity does not form overnight. Instead, it is a gradual process that results from harmful bacteria slowly weakening your enamel. When your tooth is regularly exposed to sugars, the bacteria in plaque causes the protective layer of your tooth to lose vital minerals necessary to keep it strong and healthy. Eventually, a hole forms called a cavity. It is often thought a filling is the only way to prevent it from worsening, but this is not always the case. If you act quickly, there are noninvasive solutions.
You can remineralize your enamel by making a few simple changes at home. Adding fat-soluble vitamins to your diet, such as vitamin A, D, E, and K, aid your body’s growth and regeneration to help replenish areas of weakened enamel. An improved diet combined with a remineralizing toothpaste can rebuild your enamel to prevent the cavity from worsening. While early tooth decay can often be reversed, if you do not act quickly the decay will extend deeper until it reaches the underlying dentin. At this point, you will likely need a dental filling to stop it from progressing any further.
- You make 20,000 liters of spit in your lifetime.
It may not seem like it because you are constantly swallowing and reabsorbing your saliva, but you make up to 1 wine bottle of spit per day. That’s about 20,000 liters in your lifetime! Although that may sound a little disgusting, your saliva serves an important purpose. It helps clean your teeth in between brushing and flossing. If your mouth is too dry, it increases the growth of harmful bacteria, which raises your risk of certain oral health issues, like tooth decay and gum disease.
- Your mouth is home to 200 types of bacteria.
You may not feel or taste them, but your mouth is home to around 200 types of oral bacteria. In fact, over 700 strains have been detected in a human mouth at any given time. While many are beneficial to your oral health, others can increase your risk of tooth decay and gum disease. To keep harmful bacteria at bay, it’s best to brush your teeth twice a day and floss nightly. Do not forget to visit your dentist twice a year to remove any buildup that can harbor bacteria.
Invest in a Healthy Smile
Although you may not think about your teeth often, they are influential in your daily life and your general health. Take the time to care for your smile every day to promote a healthy mouth and body.
About Dr. Preetha Thomas
Dr. Preetha Thomas not only earned her dental degree, but she also completed advanced training in oral pathology. She regularly undergoes continuing education to provide her patients with the latest techniques and treatments in dentistry. Dr. Thomas strives to deliver personalized solutions catering to her patients’ overall well-being. Contact our office today to enjoy an individualized approach to dental care.
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