Believe it or not, your parents may have given you more than your height and hair color. You may have actually inherited oral health problems depending on your family’s genetics.
That’s right, oral health issues can stem from your family tree’s hereditary base. That means you may be at higher risk for developing certain conditions, despite how good your dental hygiene practices are.To get a better picture of your risks, find out if your relatives have a history of any of the following conditions.
1. Advanced Gum Disease (Periodontal Disease)
Majority of the American adult population is affected by gum disease. Characterized by sensitive and inflamed gums, this common problem is typically bad oral hygiene, but it can also be connected to diabetes. If you have a history of diabetes in your family, you may be more susceptible to developing gum disease.
Early diagnosis and treatment can go a long way in protecting your gums and teeth. Is gum disease a problem your family members have struggled with? Make sure to mention it to your dentist during your next visit.
2. Tooth Decay
Got cavities no matter how much you brush and floss? Your grandparents may be the ones to blame. Certain variations of the gene beta-defensin 1 (DEFB1) are linked to a greater risk of cavities.
If your kids are at high-risk for cavities, talk to their dentist about sealants and fluoride treatments. Adults that are high-risk dental patients may benefit from prescription toothpastes or mouth rinses. Be sure to visit the dentist for frequent cleanings and exams. If left untreated, tooth decay can catalyze gum disease and eventually cause tooth loss.
3. Oral Cancer
Although lifestyle choices, such as tobacco and alcohol use, are the top risk factors for oral cancer, genetics can also raise your chances of developing oral cancer. People carrying certain genetic markers have been found to have a higher risk of developing the disease.
4. Crooked Teeth
If you need braces, you’re probably not the only one in the family. Genetics play a major role in determining the size of your jaw. Depending on your genes you may have more crowding, gaps, overbites or under bites.
Early orthodontic treatment can benefit many young patients, allowing developing bones and teeth to grow in properly and prevent more serious problems down the road. Adult orthodontics can also eliminate those dental issues as well.
Visit Your Dentists
Your general dentists may be able to help with most oral health issues, but if you’re facing severe dental problems like tooth loss or the need for oral surgery, the Jacksonville Dental Specialists are the team that you need to see. Dr. Nawrocki and Dr. Aguila work side by side with your general dentist to help you meet your oral health goals. If you need help with a dental issue, feel free to reach out to our office by dialing (904) 683-4781.