” Just as white, straight teeth convey youth, a smile with crooked, discolored, worn or missing teeth is associated with an aged look. The adage “long in the tooth ” is sometimes used to describe older persons and reflects the fact that gum disease causes gums to recede and teeth to appear longer as a result.” says a professor of restorative dentistry at UCLA’s School of Dentistry.
Keeping a youthful smile comes down to 2 simple, proven, and practical steps: Brush and floss daily and see your dentist every 6 months.
What’s stopping you? Perhaps some folks just don’t take oral health seriously. However, many people take their looks very seriously. While keeping a beautiful smile is a priority for most, some people may not think about their gums. Brushing takes time and flossing can be a difficult habit for people to acquire. Only 25% of people floss their teeth.
Inflammation, Periodontal Disease. Inflammation can happen when bacteria and debris, such as food particles, enter the blood vessels around the teeth. Inflammation is your body’s response to such invaders. The mouth is one of the major contributors to high levels of inflammation in the body. Chronic inflammation is linked to heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, and Alzheimer’s disease. Then there is periodontal disease, which affects 80% of Americans. It’s caused by extensive bacterial buildup along the gums and teeth. Periodontal disease is the top cause for tooth loss.
Stained teeth. Smoking and drinking, particularly red wine and coffee, can stain your teeth and affect how old you look. Teeth whitening in the dental office has become increasingly popular and a great way to look and feel younger.
Of course you need to do more than brush, floss and see your dentist to stay young. Your entire lifestyle matters. If you want to slow down the aging clock, make sure to get enough sleep, eat a healthy diet, make time for exercise and keep down your levels of inflammation by taking care of your teeth and gums. The fact remains, there are no shortcuts to getting and staying healthy.