Genetics have a bearing on many elements of a person, both inside and out. You may look exactly like your mother, father, grandparent, or favorite uncle. Perhaps you have the eyes of one relative, the body type of another, and teeth that are identical to some distant ancestor you see in a picture. Looks are one thing, but DNA can actually play a role in your general dental health as well. Our team at New Smile Dental Group will take a closer look at how genetics can possibly dictate your propensity towards cavities.
Born with Good Oral Health
We are taught from a young age that good oral hygiene and regular visits to the dentist should give us a pretty fair chance of avoiding major dental issues. While this is true to some degree, there are always people who put a little more effort forth, and still end up with a cavity or two. Then there are those who only brush their teeth in the morning, and only floss once a year, if that, yet still have perfect teeth. This is where studies have looked at genetics as an explanation for the discrepancies in the dental health of various people.
Saliva Passed Down the Generations
The way that your teeth are aligned, as well as the strength of your teeth, is traceable through your genetic history. Tooth decay is caused by Streptococcus mutans, a particular germ which feeds on sucrose to produce lactic acid. The acid breaks down the hard shell of your tooth enamel which is designed to protect the inner workings of your smile. Bacteria can then attach to the more sensitive inner workings of teeth in the form of plaque and tartar, creating cavities over time. Salivary output is an important element in keeping your teeth less infiltrated by germs. Saliva also neutralizes acid. Believe it or not, the viscosity and production of saliva is actually genetically determined, so if you have a healthy output and tend to do well at your dental checkups, you may have your lineage to thank.
About Your San Fernando Valley Dentists
At A New Smile Dental Group, our dentists strive to offer each patient individual care and access to the latest in modern dentistry at an affordable price. If you would like to schedule a consultation, contact us at our San Fernando Valley office at (818) 897-5771. We proudly serve communities in Pacoima, San Fernando, Porter Ranch, Granada Hills, Sylmar, and Mission Hills.