In a paper published online last month in the American Journal of Dental Research, researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University, California, San Diego (UCSD) found that people who had good dental health and good oral health were less likely to develop dental caries.
Their study, which involved 1,500 adults in the United States and 2,100 adults in India, examined dental carie prevalence in the teeth of 1,527 adults.
They compared the results to a nationwide sample of more than 1 million people.
What they found was that dentin prevalence was lower among people with a healthy oral health history and a history of good dental hygiene.
The team also looked at the relationship between dental cariedness and dental hygiene in the dental population.
According to the study, the more teeth a person had, the lower their dental cariousness was, while those with a low dental carying history were more likely to have poor oral health and poor dental hygiene compared to those with dental cariance.
Dentists and dentists’ organizations have long warned about the importance of having good oral hygiene.
But the new study shows that dentists, dentists and their patients are just as likely to think of oral health as dental health, said Dr. David W. Smith, a professor of oral and maxillofacial surgery at the University at Buffalo, New York.
“Dentistry is not just a profession,” Smith said.
“Dentist patients are also the ones who have to make decisions about what they want for their teeth and what their teeth are supposed to look like.”
But it’s important to remember that dentistry is still only part of dental health.
People who have good oral and dental health are also at greater risk for developing dental cariabilities and for having caries on their teeth, said W. Scott Anderson, director of the Center for Health, Health Services and Wellness Research at the College of William and Mary in Virginia.
“People who have a lot of cavities, especially when it comes to the upper teeth, may be at a higher risk of developing dental issues,” Anderson said.
However, dental health is only one part of oral care.
Dentists should also be mindful of the impact of other dental health problems on oral health, he said.
For example, people who have more tooth decay and less overall dental health should also consider other dental conditions, including dental infections, he added.
Dr. Christopher M. Hameroff, a dentistry professor at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, said that dental carias have a number of causes.
For example: “Dental caries can result from many different things, including poor diet, smoking, poor hygiene, poor dental health or any other cause,” he said in a statement.
Hameroff added that dentist-diagnosed caries may have no symptoms, but they could cause problems for a patient with poor oral hygiene and poor oral care, which may be related to their general health.
“They may be the reason you don’t get cavities,” he explained.
People with dental problems may also be at increased risk for tooth decay.
Researchers have shown that people with poor dental care are more likely than those with good dental care to develop caries, including those with high levels of tooth decay, according to the American Dental Association.
People with tooth decay may also have dental caria that is more likely in people who eat processed foods, like processed meat, and processed sugars, such as sweetened drinks and candies, as well as processed meats, such a hamburger, a cheeseburger, pizza, pasta, baked goods and pasta sauces, the American College of Donteticians wrote in a 2011 dental health bulletin.
The study also found that tooth decay rates were highest among people living in urban areas and that people living near factories or other factories were more prone to caries than those living in more rural areas.
And while dental carioablity may not be the only cause of dental problems, the study found that dental conditions that can increase dental cariosis are linked to increased risk of dental carios.
“This is a very good finding,” said Dr, Robert E. Riggs, a dental hygienist at The Hospital for Sick Children, New Orleans.
“If you have dental health issues and poor teeth, it’s a good indication that there is something wrong with your mouth and you need to see a dentist.”
Read the study in the latest issue of The American Journal: Dentistry.