Surprising Things About Spit

dental saliva toolWhen we think of spit, we may automatically think about how gross it is, especially when someone spits in public. But what would you say if we told you that spit is actually something pretty incredible? Join your dentist in Lewisburg as we talk about some of the surprising facts about spit.  

We Produce A LOT of Spit

Throughout our lives, we will produce an average of 25,000 quarts of spit. That’s enough to fill a standard swimming pool! While that may seem like a ton of spit, it sure is handy when it comes to your oral and overall health. 

Spit & Oral Health

Believe it or not, spit is in our mouths for a reason or rather several reasons. First, spit plays an important role every time we eat. As we chew, our bodies produce more saliva, and it’s this saliva that helps us breakdown food to make it more digestible. But that’s not all. Saliva also helps rinse away any leftover food particles that may have been left behind long after you finish eating. This helps keep your teeth clean and bacteria-free. Spit serves yet another purpose — neutralizing acid. Acid can wear away the protective tooth enamel and leave teeth exposed to bacteria. But with saliva on our side to neutralize the acid, teeth are protected against decay

The Problem With Not Enough Saliva

When salivary glands don’t produce enough spit, the side effect is dry mouth, which is exactly what it sounds like. Dry mouth can leave your mouth feeling like a desert- no matter how much water you drink. While dry mouth can certainly be annoying, it’s also something you should talk to your Lewisburg dentist about. Dry mouth can be a serious problem that, if left untreated, could certainly increase the risk of bad breath, decay, and even gum disease

Spit Can Save a Life

The benefits of spit go beyond oral health alone and can be used to help those with blood cancers. Blood cancers are, unfortunately, common. Every three minutes, someone in the United States is diagnosed with blood cancer. But thanks to organizations like BeTheMatch.org, more and more people are being treated successfully. You see, bone marrow is one of the most common treatments of blood cancer, and it’s often hard to find a compatible match. But thanks to spit and a national registry, it’s becoming much easier. A simple swap of spit and entry into a database provides donor match organizations access to find the right bone marrow match for blood cancer patients, increasing the chance of survival. 

When it comes to spitting, it may still be gross. But that doesn’t mean the spit itself is necessarily gross, too. Spit can benefit us in many ways and protect our smiles against the dangers of bacteria and acid. It can also help save a life. 

Welcoming new patients from Lewisburg, Selinsgrove, Williamsport, and nearby areas. 

Diabetes & Your Teeth

diabetes dayIt may seem strange to hear your dentist in Lewisburg talk about a disease that doesn’t seem to affect your oral health. But the truth is, many diseases, including diabetes, can negatively affect your teeth. In fact, diabetes can increase the likelihood of gum disease, dry mouth, and other oral health problems. For this World Diabetes Day (November 14), we want to do our part to raise awareness of the importance of dental care for those with diabetes by sharing three ways to reduce the risk of oral health complications related to diabetes. 

The Truth is in the Numbers

Nearly 30 million Americans are living with diabetes, and of those, an estimated 8.1 million aren’t even diagnosed. But those aren’t the only numbers we’re concerned about. As any diabetic knows, checking blood glucose levels often is an important part of making sure their diabetes is under control. But keeping those numbers stable can also help reduce the risk of oral health complications related to diabetes. If blood glucose is elevated, there is an increased risk of losing teeth or developing gum disease. Gum disease is a serious infection in the gum tissue and, like other infections, can also cause blood sugar to rise and make diabetes difficult to control.

Diet is Everything

Besides checking blood sugar levels regularly, diabetics are used to being careful about what they eat. This is certainly a habit your dentist in Lewisburg can get behind! Of course, limiting sugary snacks or sweets is always a recommendation, but it’s also important to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet to not only help maintain blood sugar but also for your overall and oral health. Choose raw veggies or fresh fruits and whole grains whenever possible. Your medical doctor can also help develop a meal plan that will work for you and your body. 

Don’t Forget About Oral Hygiene

We would be missing a key detail about maintaining good oral health if we didn’t talk about the importance of oral hygiene, whether you’re diabetic or not. A healthy mouth starts with a good oral hygiene routine at home. This means brushing twice a day for two minutes each time and flossing once a day to remove plaque and bacteria from teeth, under the gums, and the tongue. But even the most dedicated at-home oral hygiene routine will only go so far. Seeing your dentist in Lewisburg at least twice a year for professional cleanings is also key to a healthy mouth. These appointments are important for everyone, but especially for those with diabetes. 

Our dental office in Lewisburg believes in doing everything we can to keep our patients healthy, including talking about and raising awareness of diseases that originate in other parts of the body. After all, oral health can be negatively affected by many of these diseases. 

Want to do your part to raise awareness for diabetes this November? Wear blue on November 14, schedule an appointment with your doctor if you suspect you have diabetes, and, as always, remember to brush, floss, and see your dentist regularly. 

Welcoming patients from Lewisburg, Selinsgrove, and Williamsport.