Our oral health is affected by numerous factors and our family history. Research has revealed that those with a genetic history of poor oral health have greater chances of developing it themselves. Dental alignment, shape, size are just the beginning. The development of our jawbone and its health is also affected by our genetic heritage. Our heritage can influence even our enamel’s ability to protect against acid and bacteria.
The Family History Impact On Our Oral Health
Our DNA is responsible for almost every facet of how our bodies are built and, in many ways, how it operates. If you’ve ever noticed that certain oral health concerns seem to run in your family, your genetics are a major player in making it happen. The phrase “it runs in the family” isn’t just rhetorical verbal flotsam; it’s a very real part of the make-up of our oral health. Common congenital oral health concerns include:
- Dental misalignment and overcrowding
- Development of the size and shape of our jaws
- Improper bite
- Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD) concerns.
Regardless of your family’s history of oral health, your oral hygiene practices are firmly within your control. Understanding your family history means that you will know what concerns to watch out for. This can help you adjust your daily oral health care routine. No matter what, mouthwash, flossing, and brushing every morning and night are going to make a significant difference in your oral health. You may discover that some modifications are needed to your standard routine to address concerns such as misalignment or overcrowding.
- Periodontal Disease (Gum Disease) – This condition is extremely common, even in those without any form of dental abnormality. So common that over a third of all American adults are likely to develop this condition. Bleeding after brushing, inflammation, and sensitive gums are all symptoms. Given that it’s easy to diagnose, it’s best to take action during its earliest stages. Inform your dental provider if you have a family background of periodontal disease.
- Tooth Decay – Our dental hygiene habits are the most frequent cause of tooth decay. Some families share a tendency to weak enamel that has trouble protecting against acid and bacteria.
- Weak Teeth – Poor nutrition resulting from poor dietary choices are sure to impact the durability of your teeth. However, genetics can also be a foundational reason for this weakness. If you’ve been informed that you have weak teeth, fluoride treatments and dental sealants can help provide strength and protection to your teeth.
- Misaligned Teeth – Of all the congenital dental concerns, misalignment is probably the most common. It’s best identified and reported during an individual’s development stages. This provides the best opportunity to address these concerns before they become more difficult to address.
These are the three most common congenital concerns faced by dental patients. Understanding your family’s dental history can help your dental provider properly treat your concerns.
Your Dental Provider Can Help With Family Oral Health
Sharing important details of your family’s oral health is an important part of ensuring you get the treatment you need. Contact your dental provider and update them with your complete medical and family history of oral health.