Don’t be embarrassed if your dentist knows what you’re not telling them. The inside of your mouth tells a story about your overall health and wellbeing.
For instance, if you flossed for the first time a week before your dental appointment, we know Lots of patients try to get away with that (though usually, it’s a thorough hygienist who will make them think twice about trying it again).
Some things we can tell may not seem that important. We can tell if you bite your nails, we know if you used to suck your thumb, and yes, we know if you just flossed for the first time in ages. But there are some things that we are able to identify that may really surprise you.
5 Things Your Dentist Knows Without You Saying A Word
Nearly 50% of pregnant women develop gingivitis. A smaller percentage of women develop a pyogenic granuloma, or a “pregnancy tumor” on the gum. Typically women are far enough along in their pregnancy that they aren’t getting the news from their dentist, but pregnant women do have specific dental needs and should talk to their dentist about them.
You may have eaten too much garlic and onions, or it could be more serious. “Fruity” smelling breath could indicate diabetes, while “fishy” breath could be a sign of kidney or liver problems. If your breath smells “foul,” the issue may be with your tonsils, or gastreoesophageal reflux. Your dentist may send you to an ENT or a GI doctor for further diagnosis.
Patients often are shocked that the dentist is the first to suggest a possible eating disorder. Bulimia, in particular, causes a notable pattern of deterioration. It occurs on the tongue-side of the front teeth and the disorder over time can lead to cavities, enamel erosion, along with more severe health problems.
Alcoholic patients may give themselves away by the lingering smell of alcohol. But they also are more prone to cavities because of the high sugar content in what they drink. Heavy drinkers may suffer from dry mouth which also leads to cavities.
Some of the earliest signs of oral cancer include, unexplained bleeding in the mouth, white, red, or speckled patches in the mouth, a change in the way your teeth fit together, swellings, thickenings, and/or lumps or bumps or eroded areas on the lips and gums.
So there’s a lot going on in there and you don’t have to say a word for us to know. How your mouth is doing can tell us a lot about how you are doing overall. Be sure to keep your appointments, or schedule your next one if you haven’t already. At Asheville Dental, we care about more than just your smile. Our team wants you to be happy and healthy from head to toe.