Did you know that roughly 50% of Americans struggle with mild to severe gingivitis? This statistic is especially concerning since it is largely preventable with a solid oral hygiene routine. However, other factors can put you at risk for gum disease, including alcohol consumption. So, if you find yourself reaching for your favorite wine, beer, or mixed beverage multiple times throughout the night, read on for what you need to know about the relationship between alcohol consumption and gum disease.
The Relationship Between Alcohol Consumption and Gum Disease
According to recent research, the relationship between heavy alcohol consumption and gum disease is evident. After all, participants who drank “relatively heavily” had fewer good bacteria in their mouth and a higher level of the bad bacteria that has been linked to gum disease and cancer. Plus, the experts who conducted the study believe that the imbalance can lead to a higher risk of tooth decay, cavities, neck cancer, and heart disease. So, it’s a good idea to drink alcohol in moderation for your oral and overall health!
6 Prevention Tactics to Start Today
If you drink more than a glass or two of alcohol per night, then priority number one is limiting your intake. From there, make sure to implement the below best practices (if you aren’t already) to keep your teeth and gums in pristine condition:
- Brush your teeth for two minutes twice a day.
- Visit your dentist bi-yearly for an exam and cleaning.
- Floss daily.
- Use mouthwash frequently.
- Drink plenty of water (and avoid sugary beverages!).
- Eat a vitamin-rich diet.
How Your Dentist Can Help
When it comes to preserving your smile, no one is a bigger ally than your dentist! In addition to catching dental concerns while they are small, they can also address issues that have already begun to surface. For example, if a few too many glasses of red wine have left your teeth stained and discolored, then your dentist can help you with a teeth whitening treatment. On the other hand, if the acidic nature of your favorite drink has worn away your enamel, they can help rebuild your smile with a custom treatment plan. So, to keep your teeth and gums strong and healthy for years to come, make sure to visit your dentist at least twice a year!
The cases of gum disease in the U.S. are abundant, and they don’t show any signs of slowing down anytime soon. Therefore, there is no time like the present to protect your smile and implement the above prevention tactics!
About the Author
After completing his undergraduate degree, Dr. Ben Tindalearned his Doctorate of Dental Medicine degree from the University of Florida.Since then, he has used a blend of art, science, and engineering to help his patients with everything from routine checkups to periodontal therapy! If you are concerned about gum disease, visit his website or give him a call at 941-225-2520.