It is not uncommon for many of us to grab a bite to eat in a hurry. Americans have grown accustomed to bigger food portions at restaurants, but our mouths have not. Trying to fit that oversized sandwich or apple in your mouth might be worse for you than you have ever imagined. Below are some reasons why this could be detrimental for your oral health and what you can do about it.

Why This Is a Problem

According to the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD), taking bites that are too big for you to chew can not only cause jaw and teeth issues, it can also cause digestive problems. Discomfort, swelling and difficulty eating may result from opening your jaw too wide. Taking large bites may also result in food not being chewed thoroughly, which can lead to weight gain and digestive issues.

Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD)

Constantly opening your jaw too wide becomes an even larger problem for people with temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD). The temporomandibular joint connects the jaw to the skull bones enabling movement during chewing. People with TMD, usually have a restriction with how wide they can open their jaws. Taking large bites of food, especially hard foods like apples, can aggravate this condition making pain and jaw clicking worse.

What You Can Do

If you have food that is too large to chew or starts to cause jaw discomfort, try cutting your food into smaller portions. This makes food easier to eat with less hassle. Also consider eating softer foods that won’t harm your teeth or irritate your jaw.

Tip: Avoid chewing on ice, popcorn kernels, hard candies, and opening nuts with your teeth. This can lead to a chipped tooth!

Contact our team today to schedule an exam and cleaning.

Dentist in South Beach | Periodontal Disease and Heart Health
Dentist in South Beach, FL
Did you know that a regular oral hygiene routine could be a factor into saving your life? Twice-daily brushing and flossing are necessary for optimal periodontal health. Researchers found a link showing that people with periodontal disease are twice as likely to have heart disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 610,000 people die of heart disease every year. It is important for people to understand how and why these diseases are linked so we can promote the effects of optimal oral health.

The Link Between Periodontal Disease and Heart Disease

Researchers have found that the link between these two diseases are caused by the same bacteria. Bacteria found in infected gums can break down tissue causing inflammation. The inflammation caused by periodontal disease can travel through the bloodstream and attach to fatty deposits. This can cause blood clots which may lead to heart attacks or strokes.

Stages of Gum Disease

Gum disease advances through a series of stages, growing in severity. Gingivitis, the first stage of gum disease, is best combated with early detection. It is important to schedule an appointment with our team at least twice a year. That way, we can monitor your oral health and diagnose any problems right away. Brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily will help prevent gingivitis from developing. When left untreated, gingivitis can progress into periodontitis which requires more advanced treatment.

Treating Periodontal Disease for Better Overall Health

Periodontal treatment can include a variety of different procedures in addition to intensive homecare. Personal oral care plays a part in any periodontal treatment plan so we will spend time making sure you know the correct way to care for your gums. Quit smoking as tobacco has been linked to poor periodontal health and heart problems. Those who are at a higher risk of developing periodontal disease, or already have it, should visit our team more frequently than twice a year.

Your mouth can be the key to living a long, happy, and healthy life. It is important to understand the relationship between your mouth and your overall health. Reduce your risk of heart problems by being proactive about your oral health and schedule an appointment with us today.