Research suggests that men tend to struggle with their oral health more than women do. According to several studies, there are more male than female patients with gum disease, lost teeth, and other oral infections. Steven N. Kacel, D.D.S., M.A.G.D., F.A.D.I., leading dentist in the Highland Park IL area, has some tips that work for both genders, but may be particularly helpful for men.
First, though, it is worth considering why this trend is occurring. One interesting factor is that medications used for heart diseases and blood pressure can increase your risk of developing oral health issues. Men as a whole are more susceptible to the disorders that require this medication, so that may be a strong contributing factor.
With that being said, however, research generally finds that men visit the dentist less often than women do, and are not as dedicated to oral health care as women are. Here are a few quick and easy dental tips men can apply to start changing these alarming statistics and even the odds.
According to the Academy of General Dentistry, men visit dentists less often than women. Instead of visiting a dentist when the problem is severe, it is important to go there a few times a year for routine checkups. Men should make it a norm to visit the dentist at the very least once a year, if not every six months.
Research by the American Dental Association showed that only 20.5 percent of men brush their teeth twice a day. Insufficient brushing leads to accumulation of bacteria in teeth, which in turn can cause tooth decay. Brushing twice a day fights off painful cavities, and helps prevent any nasty surprises waiting for you at the next routine checkup.
Get the Right Brush
Even if you brush twice a day, it won’t make much of a difference if you’re using an old or bad toothbrush – it won’t be able to eliminate all the germs from your teeth and do its job properly. Dr. Kacel, your dentist near Highland Park IL, recommends a toothbrush that has soft bristles. A hard brush will only hurt your gums. In addition, it’s important to change your brush when you it is worn down – usually every three months or so.
Use the Right Technique
While brushing teeth regularly is beneficial, it will not be truly effective if you just skim the teeth for a few seconds. To maximize the cleaning procedure, the best technique is to brush up, brush down, and then brush in a circular motion around the tooth.
Assess Your Habits
Take a look at the statistics and you may notice that men tend to use tobacco products more than women. Dr. Kacel, your cosmetic dentist next to Highland Park IL in Northbrook, IL can tell you more about how tobacco chewing or smoking puts one at a severely higher risk of contracting periodontal diseases. Use of steroids also increases the risk. Dropping these habits means you can get a much cleaner smile. Beer drinkers may also consider alternating a glass of water between pints. The high sugar content in beer and wine make it detrimental to the teeth. Hard alcohols like gin, vodka, and whiskey are sugar free, and may be a better option in moderation.
Even though historically men are not as vigilant when it comes to oral hygiene, these easy and pain-free tips can be implemented right now to help improve oral health and balance the gender scale.