Spit: we all have it, yet most of us are unaware of the powerful role it plays in our oral health. Your saliva does far more than just keep your mouth moist. Did you know that the average person produces over 25,000 liters of saliva in a lifetime? That is enough to fill two swimming pools! Clearly, there are reasons that our bodies produce so much spit. From digesting food to preventing cavities, you may be surprised to learn the critical roles that saliva plays in your oral health.
One of saliva’s roles is to aid in digestion. It helps you break down the food in your mouth and swallow it more easily. When it comes to your mouth health, saliva is critical. If you don’t have enough saliva in your mouth, you are at risk for cavities and bad breath. Your teeth and gums need saliva to rinse away harmful bacteria and acids from the foods and drinks you consume each day. Your saliva also has the proteins and minerals that are necessary to protect your tooth enamel and prevent infections such as gum disease.
Human saliva may be 99.5% water, but the other .5% is gaining a lot of attention in the medical field. The role of saliva is becoming more and more important in detecting other medical conditions and diseases outside of your mouth. In fact, dentists may soon be able to test saliva and expose medical indicators for pancreatic cancer, stomach cancer and even lung cancer. Your bacterial make up of your saliva can also reveal how prone you are to getting cavities.
Considering the importance of your saliva in regards to your oral health and general health, it is critical that you address problems with low saliva production with your dentist. Highland Oaks Family Dentistry can treat your dry mouth condition. There are several causes of dry mouth including medication side effects, tobacco use, and open mouth breathing. However, certain diseases and infections can also be causes. Alzheimer’s, anemia, cystic fibrosis, hypertension, rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes all tend to reduce the amount of saliva in your mouth. Ask your dentist about ways to increase your spit levels – the health of your smile is at stake!
Posted on behalf of Highland Oaks Family Dentistry
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Highland Oaks Family Dentistry
Keller, TX 76248