The mouth is a complicated network of machinery. Keeping it checked and clean is one of the most important parts of overall clinical health for every age group. Children, of course, have growing mouths that need constant care. Many adults forget that even though their teeth are no longer growing, they’re dental alignment is still subject to shifting and change. Flossing is a must, as is recognizing and dealing with nighttime grinding, a serious detractor to oral health. The American Sleep Association has estimated that 15% of children and 10% of adults grind their teeth while sleeping. It’s a problem that can be hard to detect and affects all age groups. With this idea in mind, it’s worth remembering that there are several components to the oral mechanism, all of which work together behind the visible scenes to keep the individual healthy. Here are some of the major but underspoken players to take care of.
Tongue cleaning is one of the most important and consistently underrated parts of oral hygiene. In fact, the tongue is one of the largest organs in the mouth and by far the most versatile. Brushing the tongue is as vital as brushing the teeth to prevent halitosis and bacterial buildup. Specific tongue cleaners are sold for this purpose. As the center of taste for the mouth, the tongue plays a role in both keeping the overall orifice clean and functioning. For some sectors of work, the tongue is the physical focal point of creativity, ala cooking. A tongue not properly cleaned can block some taste sensation, not at all conducive when tasting new recipes. Be sure to pay attention to all areas when brushing and a get deep scrub on the tongue.
While they do sell tongue cleaners, they don’t sell anything to help take care of the jaw. This is mainly a problem in people who grind their teeth when they sleep as the harmful effects of grinding extend past the teeth themselves. For severe teeth grinders, the jaw muscle can be pulled or sore upon waking, al from putting almost 300 lbs of pressure on the teeth during the night. This can make chewing and eating a painful ordeal later on and lead to more general stress in the day. Up to 80% of headaches can occur from muscle tension, some of which is directly related to jaw stress from teeth grinding. Speak with an oral care professional about any headaches or jaw pain that might be stemming from the problem. It’s easy to dismiss but under no circumstances should go without some form of treatment.
Gums are the bed upon which the teeth rest. Many U.S. citizens suffer from sort of gum disease, more than 75% in total. After utilizing tongue cleaners, be sure to floss deep between the teeth and onto the gums. This will be a striking asset in helping fight gum disease later on. Gingivitis is one of the more common ailments in the United States and is easily preventable. Bleeding gums will flossing is a good indicator of early gingivitis and should be looked at by an oral care professional. Since the gums wrap around all the way in the mouth, be sure to clean all the way to the back when brushing. The back gums are easy to miss and can be breeding grounds for bacteria, especially if the wisdom teeth haven’t been removed. Get the entire lining of the mouth, not just the surface. It will only help in the long run.