Biting your cheek when you’re enjoying a nice sandwich or your favorite chips is a particular type of pain — but the resulting wound won’t last as long as one on, say, your foot or knee. Why is it that burns, cuts, and other injuries in the oral soft tissues heal much faster than those elsewhere in the body? Science says it’s due to a particular molecule in your saliva. Keep reading as your family dentist in Framingham explains exactly what that means!
The Magic of Saliva
We have long known that human saliva has something to do with the fact that wound healing is faster and more efficient in the oral cavity than elsewhere in the body. Now, new research may explain that it has something to do with something called “salivary peptide histatin-1” and the effect it has on blood vessels, which are crucial in the healing process. Biology and science nerds should read more about the study to get a better idea of how it works! For the rest of us, it’s enough to know that saliva is VIP to a healthy mouth.
Take Care of Your Smile!
As unpleasant as it may sound, having a healthy and well-hydrated mouth means having one that is full of saliva. This magic substance not only helps to heal minor cuts and wounds, it also helps to ward off cavities, bad breath, and gum disease.
Certain factors can impede your mouth’s ability to produce enough saliva for a healthy smile throughout the day. People who do not drink enough water, smoke tobacco, and/or who take certain medications are at a high risk of dry mouth and related oral health complications. Visiting your dentist every six months can help to protect your smile from the consequences of not having enough saliva to keep your mouth healthy.
To encourage a more hydrated mouth, try to…
- Keep a reusable water bottle at work or in your bag as a reminder to sip throughout the day.
- Avoid cigarettes and tobacco, which cause dry mouth and also put your oral and overall health at great risk.
- Stay away from beverages that dehydrate your body, including caffeinated drinks and alcohol.
- Make sure to brush and floss your teeth as recommended — that means twice daily brushing and daily flossing.
- Schedule an appointment with your trusted dentist every six months for a checkup and cleaning!
Meet Your Framingham Dentists
Dr. Mark Fried, Dr. Julie Werman, and Dr. Sarah Shih are the dentists Framingham trusts for comprehensive dental care. To find out about their general, restorative, or cosmetic dentistry treatments or to schedule an appointment for the same, do not hesitate to contact (508) 872-9339 today.