Studies show that more than half of Americans celebrate Valentine’s Day. And from the loving messages on tiny candy hearts and hand-picked cards to chocolates and roses, if you celebrate Valentine’s Day, a kiss is probably on your wish list. But before snuggling up to your loved one this year, make sure your mouth is in tip-top health because, as it turns out, a kiss is more than just a kiss.
Why do we say that? Kissing stimulates saliva, which can help fight cavities. However, if the person you’re kissing has poor dental and general health, you run the risk of contracting unwanted germs, illnesses or diseases instead of candy, flowers or cards.
Here’s what you need to know about making your smile a vision of love for February 14.
Cavities can be contagious. Whether through kissing or something as simple as sharing a fork, the bacteria that cause cavities can spread to another person.
Beware of bad breath. Bacteria is a big culprit of bad breath, so regular habits like brushing and flossing are especially important. You can also use over-the-counter antimicrobial mouthwashes or chew sugarless gum.
Share your life, but not a toothbrush. For many couples, keeping a toothbrush at each other’s place is a big step in their relationship. Just make sure you each have your own because sharing toothbrushes also mean sharing germs.
Whiten and brighten your smile. Nothing is more attractive than a confident, gleaming smile. If whitening makes you feel better about yours, talk to your dentist about which option is best for you.
Smoking isn’t appealing. Smoking is bad for your breath and it stains your teeth, not to mention how terrible it is for your overall health. Smoking affects how well you smell and taste and people who use tobacco are twice as likely to get gum disease as someone who doesn’t smoke. Smokers are also more at risk for oral cancer. Give yourself a gift this Valentine’s Day and quit today.
Don’t Forget About the Dentist! A good relationship with and regular visits to your dentist can help keep your mouth at its best all year long. Your dentist can help keep you healthy, discuss any concerns you may have and give more advice on keeping your smile fresh.
If you want your mouth to be fresh and kissable on Valentine’s Day – and all year long – call our office today to schedule a consultation!