What does your smile say about you? You may be surprised that your smile and teeth are saying a lot more than you think! They may be telling others how old you are and even if you are stressed out. In many cases, Dr. Caracioni can also tell the state of your overall health by the state of your teeth.
Shape. The shape of your teeth indicates your age. Specifically, the shape of your front upper teeth, known as the central incisors. Younger people tend to have central incisors that are rectangular with rounded corners. Older people have more squared-off front upper teeth. They also have shorter teeth than younger people.
Missing teeth. Did you know that tooth loss has connections to the development of dementia? A study by the Mayo Clinic says that losing a tooth before the age of 35 may be connected to Alzheimer’s disease through the bacteria Porphyromonas gingivalis. P. gingivalis causes gum disease, which can lead to tooth loss.
Gender. Your teeth can also indicate gender. Long and square lateral incisors, which are the teeth immediately adjacent to the front upper teeth, are found in men, while women have short and rounded lateral incisors.
Medications. Your teeth can tell others you are taking a prescription. Some medicines cause staining of the teeth and leave telltale signs for your dentist, meaning you may need to talk to your doctor about your meds. Some medications can also negatively impact saliva production and leave patients with dry mouth.
Illness. The symptoms of many diseases first manifest in the mouth. Signs of oral cancer, diabetes, acid reflux and even osteoporosis are often evident during a dental check-up.
Stress. Many times, your dentist can tell that you are stressed out. Stress often causes people to grind their teeth and clench their jaws. These actions put pressure on your teeth, which wears down enamel over time. Grinding your teeth and clenching your jaw can also damage your TMJ joints, which can mean pain and even loss of function in severe cases.
What are your teeth saying about you? Find out from Dr. Caracioni. Schedule an appointment today by calling 785-783-0741.