Tuesday, September 6, 2016

What Your Gums Could Be Trying To Say To You!

Let's talk about the health implications of the mouth shall we? I'm not talking about the whiteness of the teeth or the minty freshness of your breath. It's the oral bacterial climate in the mouth that is an indicator of your overall health and predictor of future problems that may erupt. 

Gums Can Tell You Things. Your gums should be considered one of the key indicators of your health. They really do tell a story, if you have the information to interpret it. First of all, have we all heard that gum disease not only means your teeth are in danger, but that you may have inflammation in other areas of the body? When your mouth is out of balance, you are at risk for diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and Alzheimer's, to name just a few. Advanced gum disease can raise your risk of heart attack by 10 times, AND if you get a heart attack stemming from gum disease, 9 out of 10 times it will be fatal.

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With the likes of renowned dentists like Dr. Gerry Curatolla, from New York University, who has been saying for 30 years that the mouth is the gateway to systematic health, and with the medical community in agreement, at least on this point--that heart disease is related to gum disease, maybe we should start paying more attention to our mouths.

Rather than stripping our mouths of  all microbes, leaving it a barren wasteland, care for your mouth by using cleaning routines that leave the good bacteria intact and therefore lets the mouth be a helpful healing ground rather than a health liability.
Some Things You Can Start Immediately If you have bleeding gums, for instance, that could be an indication of a shortage of vitamin C and Coenzyme Q10. A simple solution would be to supplement in those areas. Another great idea is to clean the mouth using coconut oil or sesame seed oil--a process called oil pulling! The concept has been around for awhile, for at least 3,000 years in Indian or Ayurvedic Medicine, and has gained some momentum in the U.S.  I can say from personal experience that oil pulling has made my teeth feel cleaner instantly, like a dental cleaning, and if it can do that in just a couple of times, I tend to believe some of the other claims about the process like bad breath elimination, cavity prevention, gum healing, and improvement of oral health in general. Basically, take a couple teaspoons up to 2 tablespoons of oil, hold it in your mouth for a minute to liquify, then gently swish around for up to 10 minutes. It loosens up so much gunk and then you spit it out into a receptacle other than your drain (you don't want drain clog). Repeat 3 - 5 times per week. 

The Flouride Discussion
I'm calling it a discussion, but in dental and medical circles, it is an all-out brawl. 

Americans have consented to have flouride added to their water since the 1940's, with it being federally regulated since the 1960s. But really, how necessary is it and how much do we know about it? There is a huge controversy about having regulated flouride added to our water. The Center For Disease Controls, the American Medical Association and the American Dental Association all say that it is one of the most important public health measures of the 20th Century.

However, concerned medical authorities are saying that flouride in our water is nothing more than industrial run-off. People are showing the visual effects of getting too much flouride. It is especially evident in children, as over 1/3 of U.S. children are affected with too much flouride, and shows up in a condition called flourosis, which is little white specks on their teeth. In the more serious cases, and more often in younger children under 8 years of age, it's brown spots on the teeth that look like decay. My own son had this condition and I couldn't figure it out. He lived with his dad, my ex-husband, at the time and I thought that it was tooth decay, when it was, in fact, flourosis. This is occuring because we are getting too much flouride and it is approaching toxic levels. Not only do we use flouride toothpastes, flouride water, and flouride rinses, but we are also getting it in our food because of pesticide residues. Grapes and iceburg lettuce are extremely high in flouride "run-off". If it is showing evidence in our children's teeth, what is it doing to bones, and circulatory systems? 

Certainly an appropriate first step would be to stop using fluoridated toothpastes and rinses and start using a water filter with reverse osmosis, which helps remove flouride from  drinking water. A national organization alerting citizens with information and education is the Flouride Action Network. It's a good place to start learning more about where you stand on this issue!

No matter where you stand on some of these issues, it is more than apparent that cosmetic dentistry is not the most important thing at stake when it comes to your oral health!
Sources: WebMD, Live Science, Second Look, Mercola.com

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