Genetics and Dental HealthDo you praise your genes for your greatest attributes? Do you curse genetics for parts of your appearance or personality that you’re not happy with? Genes are given much credit for who we are, and rightly so. The DNA blueprint which you can’t see with the naked eye certainly dictates many of your physical and mental propensities. What about teeth? Well, of course, the shape of teeth, the shape of your jaw, and how everything fits together might look identical to your mother, father, or grandparents. Houston  dentistDr. Deborah Gennero, will expand even further on this concept of how genetics can a predict one’s tendency towards tooth decay and gum disease.

High-Quality Saliva

“Gosh, you have beautiful saliva?” “Thank you. I get it from my uncle.” Okay, perhaps this isn’t a verbal exchange you’re likely to hear. However, saliva strength and quality are often predicted by genetics. What does this matter in terms of your dental health? Well, saliva acts as a sort of natural faucet inside your mouth, washing your teeth free of food particles and bacteria that can mix together to create plaque. Plaque (and the hardened form known as tartar) will damage tooth enamel and gums. Bacteria will always exist in your mouth, but good, strong, high-quality saliva keeps the germs swimming instead of sticking. If you have good saliva composition that helps keep your teeth cavity free, you can thank your ancestors for passing it on to you.

Gum Disease

Genetics also play a major role in periodontal disease (gum disease). A great many Americans – roughly 80% – suffer from some form of gum disease, regardless of dental hygiene and regular dental visits. Research has uncovered that family history can predict gum disease. As with most health issues, nature and nurture must come together for optimum results. Even if you have no family history of gum disease, brushing, flossing, and visiting the dentist every six months to remove plaque and tartar buildup can keep gum disease at bay.

Visit your Houston Dentist

Remember, regular checkups and cleanings help protect your smile regardless of genes. Call Dr. Gennero today for a consultation by contacting our Houston dentist office at (281) 578-6200. We are proud to offer comprehensive dentistry to patients from Clear Lake to The Woodlands, including Katy, West Houston, Sugarland, the 77084 zip code, and surrounding neighborhoods.