Why Is Your Dental Health So Important?
We care for our patients Oral Health and have compiled this article on the benefits of a good dental health regime.
Your oral health is far more critical than you might think. According to the Canadian Dental Association, approximately 2.26 million school days are missed by students every year due to dental-related illnesses. These illnesses can include cavities, gum disease, oral cancer, or even hereditary complications.
However, it is still possible to prevent some of these illnesses from affecting you and your family. By visiting your dental practitioner, you can receive helpful advice on what to do for your oral health.
Oral health is a significant measure of overall health, and regular dental visits are recommended to maintain oral health. The purpose of this study is to determine the pattern (amount and type) of and factors associated with dental care use among Ontarians.
Data from the 2014 cycle of the Canadian Community Health Survey was used, and analysis was restricted to individuals aged 12 and above residing in Ontario. Dental care use was defined by two outcomes: not visiting a dentist within the past year and visiting only for emergencies. Multivariable logistic regression was performed to examine the association between socio-demographic, health behaviour, oral health, and other health-related factors and the two outcomes.
Importance of Dental Health
The lack of accessibility to dental care has led to increased use of expensive acute health care settings for critical dental problems that are preventable and best dealt with in a primary dental care setting. In 2006, Ontario’s expenditure on these acute dental visits was $16.4 million. In addition, these critical care visits increase the volume of people visiting emergency departments and the number of hospital admissions, which are costly care options for preventable oral health problems. Providing individuals with an improved ability to seek regular dental care through coverage promotes less expensive preventative care options.
Many organizations, including the Canadian Association of Public Health Dentistry, have long been asking for the implementation of universal dental coverage, and now is the ideal time for this to happen. The Health Accord was a ten–year agreement that outlined the federal funding to be supplied to the provinces for health care. Following its expiration in 2014, there was no action to implement a new accord. The federal government did promise to continue providing some resources to the provinces. However, the federal government had progressively decreased its influence on health care delivery since the 1970s when it began providing transfers in relation to the gross national product rather than demand and providing tax credits instead of cash transfers. Its increasingly hands-off approach to health care combined with a lack of renegotiation of the Health Accord demonstrates a waning desire to coordinate health care policy across the country. Therefore, it is essential to consider and implement universal dental coverage before the Health Accord has faded into a distant memory. The federal government becomes further distanced from health care policy.
The 1964 Royal Commission on Health Services, which formed the basis of our public health care system, called for the inclusion of dental care services within the framework that was to be developed. It did, however, acknowledge that at that point in time, it was not possible due to a shortage of dentists. Today, the number of dentists is no longer prohibitory. Between 1991 and 2001, the number of dentists in every province of Canada increased except for Yukon. Between 2000 and 2010, the number of dentists and dental hygienists increased by 41.6%, a growth rate almost four times that of the Canadian population. In addition, it has been shown that Canadian dentists today support the incorporation into the public system.
Keeping Up Your Oral Health
Regular dental visits play a critical role in maintaining your oral health — not only to find and remedy any problems with teeth or gums but also to assess the general condition of your oral health, point out potential trouble spots, and offer suggestions for preventive care. In between visits, the best way to keep your teeth clean and free of disease, your gums pink and healthy, and your breath fresh, is a program of daily oral hygiene. Your routine should include the following: (we need to add the importance of regular dental visits for check and hygiene to maintain oral health and not only when required)
Brush and Floss.
- It would be best if you brushed at least twice a day and flossed at least once daily. This will help remove plaque, a bacteria-laden biofilm, from the surfaces of your teeth. The bacteria in plaque can turn sugars from food into acids, which attack the tooth’s enamel and cause tooth decay. Some bacteria can also cause gingivitis and other gum diseases.
Make sure you’re getting the proper amount of fluoride.
Fluoride strengthens tooth enamel — it’s essential for children’s developing teeth and helps prevent decay in kids and adults. Even if your municipal water is fluoridated, you should always use fluoride toothpaste. If more fluoride is needed, it can be applied directly to your teeth at the dental office.
Limit between-meal snacks.
Sugary snacks are the perfect fuel for decay-causing bacteria — and when eaten throughout the day, they keep the acid constantly on the attack. So give your mouth a break, and (if you allow them) limit sugary treats to mealtime.
Use an appropriate mouth-rinse
Especially if you’re at increased risk, therapeutic mouth rinses do more than temporarily mask bad smells or tastes in your mouth — they can improve your overall oral hygiene. While some over-the-counter products primarily offer “cosmetic” benefits, therapeutic rinses contain anti-bacterial and anti-cariogenic (cavity-fighting) ingredients. In addition, using a therapeutic mouth rinse has been proven to control plaque bacteria and prevent cavities better than brushing and flossing alone.
Whether smoked or smokeless, tobacco use significantly increases your risk of oral cancer, gum disease, and tooth decay (not to mention heart disease and lung cancer… but you already knew that). So if you use tobacco, ask us how to quit now.
Examine your mouth regularly.
Once you’ve established a routine, you’ll quickly recognize any changes in your mouth — like chipped teeth, red or swollen gums, or unusual sores. If you find something of concern, let us know. Early treatment offers the best chance to remedy many problems. A primary goal of modern dentistry is to help you keep your teeth and gums healthy for a lifetime. By following a conscientious program of oral hygiene, you have the best chance at making this goal a reality.
Regular Dental Visits
Regularly scheduled trips to your dentist are critically important to your oral health. These regularly scheduled appointments can detect problems early before they become emergencies. Also, regular dental hygiene appointments are critical to maintaining good oral health.
More than a quarter of participants reported not visiting the dentist in the last year, and 19% reported usually visiting a dentist only for emergencies. Multivariable logistic regression analysis suggested that males, individuals of Aboriginal status, those with low educational attainment, low household income, no dental insurance, who smoked, less frequent teeth brushing, poor health of teeth and mouth, or had diabetes were at a significantly increased likelihood of not visiting the dentist within the past year, and only seeing a dentist for emergency care.
Good Dental health is good health! Please regularly schedule your annual or semi-annual checkups with your dentist. A bit of prevention can save your health, teeth, and pocketbook!
Article compiled by Luka Dental Care.
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