dentistMaintaining a healthy lifestyle is not difficult if you keep up with everything.  If you practice good habits, you are more likely to remain healthy for a long time.  The key is realizing that there are many aspects of your health that you may not realize are important.  For example, going to the dentist regularly is an important part of healthy living.  Not only that, maintaining good oral hygiene will help protect you from a bunch of diseases and other health conditions.  In fact, people who practice good oral hygiene habits are less likely to suffer from heart disease or diabetes.  Most people do not realize that their oral health is closely linked to their body’s overall state of being.  Since all your nutrients come through your mouth, it is important that your mouth be healthy.  If you do not take care of your teeth you will develop far too much plaque, which is the dental term for bacteria and other contaminating substances that have developed on the teeth and gums.  Everyone develops plaque throughout the day from eating, drinking, salivating, and even breathing.  That is why you need to brush and floss on a daily basis to eliminate as much of the plaque as you can.  The most common conditions that directly involve your oral hygiene habits are gingivitis and cavities.  Gingivitis also goes by the name gum disease, and, as would be expected, is an infection of the gums.  It can get quite severe in some cases, and can even result in severe swelling and pain and, eventually, the loss of teeth.  Dentists can treat gingivitis, in most cases, but the longer it is allowed to continue, the worse the problem will become.  Brushing and flossing are the main preventative measures that can be taken to reduce the risk of developing gingivitis.  To prevent gingivitis, it is important to focus on brushing your gums and flossing around them.  For whatever reason, people often focus on their teeth when brushing and neglect their gums.  Cavities are the other common threat to your mouth’s well-being.  Cavities are holes that form in your teeth when too much plaque develops in one spot.  The plaque is so corrosive to your teeth that it dissolves the tooth away until this hole is formed.  To treat a cavity, your dentist must drill the infected portion of the tooth out with a tiny dental drill.  After that, the tooth is filled with a quick-drying material that reforms the removed portion of your tooth.  It is usually smoothed over using other dental equipment, until the tooth is in its original shape.  In some cases, the placement and alignment of your tooth effects your ability to brush, floss, and eat properly. If this is the case, you may need to get your teeth realigned, using either Invisalign or braces.  Invisalign is the preferable method, in many regards, but it cannot be used to treat all tooth and jaw alignment issues.  There are some things braces can do that Invisalign cannot, though Invisalign is far less uncomfortable.

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