The Bacteria in Your Mouth Are Good for You

dental_care_phoenixIf you are old enough to read this article, your mouth is loaded with bacteria. In our germ-phobic culture, we are surrounded by germ-destroying products. We want everything from our sinks to our countertops to be germ-free. But your mouth? You want your bacteria, and you want a lot of them.

“Bacteria live on everything, from the spoon you take out of the drawer to the apple you rinse off and enjoy biting into,” says Dr. Carol Ford from her Phoenix dental practice. “Some of them are harmful, but as long as you keep them in balance, you can benefit from them. Bacteria aid in digestion, in breaking down your food to be useful to you,” Dr. Ford adds.

You should know that bacteria means more than one. Lots more. And more than one kind of bacteria, too. The secret to keeping your mouth healthy is not to keep it germ free, but to keep those bacteria in balance. A balanced-bacteria mouth is a healthy mouth.

How do you balance the bacteria in your mouth?

1.Start with eating healthy foods. Fresh fruit, vegetables, lean meat and whole grains keep the balance.

2. Water helps wash away too many bacteria.

3. Brushing and flossing remove bacteria before they are overgrown and start to harm you.

4. Sugar, unfortunately, feeds the bacteria and allows them to overgrow.

5. Junk food is generally loaded with extra sugar and fat, which doesn’t nourish you, but nourishes the bacteria.

When bacteria start to overgrow, they can cause tooth decay and gum disease. If the enamel is damaged, it won’t heal on its own. If the gums are damaged past the point of healing quickly, you have periodontal disease that needs a professional treatment to get better.

The web magazine Perio Protect says, “One of the most dangerous diseases associated with oral bacteria is periodontitis. And it doesn’t only attack your teeth and gums. Complications can occur and links have been drawn to systemic health diseases. “

“You can do most of the work of keeping your oral bacteria in balance,” says Dr. Ford, “but you need to visit your dentist regularly to get a professional opinion and treatment if the bacteria are causing damage.”

The best part of the dental visit is a healthy and bright smile, kept bright by planned care.

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