Your radiant smile is not just a result of clean teeth and gums, but a healthy oral environment that protects them and keeps your mouth functioning smoothly. Along with daily brushing and flossing, and having professional dental cleanings, saliva creates a protective environment for your teeth and oral tissues (tongue, gums, cheeks). Saliva is produced in the mouth by traveling through tubes known as salivary ducts made in the salivary glands. So how exactly does saliva impact your smile?
Why Healthy Saliva Production Is Vital to Your Smile
- Saliva production protects tooth enamel with its proteins and minerals.
- Saliva production keeps your mouth moist and comfortable.
- Saliva production helps you chew, taste and swallow food.
- Saliva production prevents cavities and gum disease.
- Saliva production keeps dentures in place so they don’t slide around.
- Saliva production fights germs in the mouth, so your breath smells better.
Dry mouth, or xerostomia develops when saliva production is too low. This condition causes the oral tissues (gums, tongue) to swell which causes discomfort. Also, in a dry environment, germs proliferate, causing bad breath. Ultimately, a dry mouth can make you more vulnerable to tooth decay and gum disease.
To create healthy saliva production for your healthy smile, ensure proper hydration by drinking lots of water, limit diuretic consumption (coffee, tea, alcohol, caffeinated soda). You can stimulate the salivary glands by chewing sugarless gum or sucking on sugarless candy.
Keep your smile healthy with good oral hygiene habits and see your dentist regularly every six months for dental cleanings. To schedule your next visit with Dr. Jamine Rogers, please call our Shoals Smile by Design team in Muscle Shoals, Alabama at 256-314-0676 today.