Father’s Day is a time to celebrate the dads who work so hard to provide for their families. Sometimes, however, taking care of everyone else can lead to forgetting to take care of yourself. This year, it’d be a good idea to remind your own father that he also needs to be protecting his own health – and that especially includes his teeth. June is Men’s Oral Health Month, and you can celebrate by learning more about why men might need to be extra vigilant when it comes to their mouths.
How Well Do Men Take Care of Their Teeth?
According to American Dental Association, men are more likely to neglect oral health and avoid preventive dental care than women. Specifically, it’s been found that only 49% of men brush their teeth twice a day (compared to 56.8% of women); additionally, women are almost twice as likely as men to have visited their dentist within the past year. Because of this, men tend to develop cavities and periodontal disease more often than women.
Why is it Important for Men to Practice Good Oral Hygiene?
Periodontal disease, or gum disease, is an infection of the gums that can cause bad breath, bleeding, redness and swelling. If allowed to advance too much, it can eventually lead to tooth loss. Cavities can also eventually lead to an infection that will require a root canal or extraction.
Worse, gum disease and tooth decay can both cause abscesses. These are pockets of pus filled with bacteria. An infection that has abscessed can eventually spread to other parts of the body and become life-threatening. Because of these health risks, good oral hygiene should never be considered optional.
How Can Men Take Care of Their Oral Health?
Obviously, making brushing a twice-daily habit and keeping those dental appointments can make a huge difference in taking care of your teeth and gums. There might also be specific circumstances that require you to be proactive in protecting your mouth.
- When playing sports, always wear a mouthguard to protect your teeth from physical trauma.
- If you take certain medications, such as for your heart, it could put you at risk for dry mouth and make it more difficult for your mouth to stay clean; drink plenty of water and chew sugarless gum to help remove bacteria and food particles.
- If you smoke or chew tobacco, the risk of gum disease or oral cancer is much higher; you may need to see the dentist more frequently.
It can be easy for fathers to let their own health take less of a priority while making sure the rest of the family is well-cared for. That’s why it’s important for them to examine their own oral habits and consider changing behaviors that are putting them at risk. Whether you’re a father yourself or simply have one in your life, it’s a good idea to speak with a dentist to learn how Dad can better watch out for his teeth.
About the Practice
At Pelican Landing Dental, a team of three dentists and a prosthodontist combine their skills and utilize innovative technology such as intraoral cameras and digital X-rays to provide patients in Bonita Springs with high quality care. They provide various types of preventive and restorative care, such as fillings for cavities. To schedule an appointment, visit their website or call (239) 948-2111.