Not taking care of your teeth can lead to more than bad breath, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and more. But studies have shown that less than ½ of all Americans floss on a daily basis, and 34% did not visit a dentist at all last year.
Lack of regular brushing and flossing leaves small food particles wedged between the teeth that collect bacteria and emit chemicals, like hydrogen sulfide-the same compound that gives rotten eggs their characteristic smell.
Therefore, it is very important to take good care of your teeth and gums, but for more reasons than you might think. Because the mouth is the “gateway to the body,” bacteria from the teeth and gums can affect your overall health in more ways than one. Poor dental hygiene can lead to tooth decay or cavities.
Despite what you might think, cavities do not only occur in children. Adults can get them too. The teeth are covered in a hard outer coating called enamel. Every day, a thin film of bacteria (dental plaque) builds up on the teeth which produces a bacteria that can eat a hole in this enamel if not removed. Brushing and flossing can help protect your teeth from decay, but once a cavity has formed, a dentist has to fix it.