Is Dental Health Genetic?

Closeup of a brunette mother holding her young baby in a white blanket as the sun sets

It’s not uncommon for your dentist to ask you for your family medical history, especially during your first visit. Which leads us to wonder: could your dental health actually be genetic? Almost everything about your body boils down to genetics at a certain point, and your oral health isn’t any different. We’ve listed just a few oral health issues that you can inherit from your family.

1. Tooth Color

If you find that your teeth have a yellowish appearance despite your best efforts to keep them clean and healthy, you may realize that the color of your teeth is similar to that of your parents’ and grandparents’. But don’t worry—our office offers professional teeth whitening and dental veneers if you’re unhappy with the color of your smile.

2. Misaligned Teeth

Genetics play a major role in determining the shape and size of your jaw, which can contribute to the misalignment of your teeth.

3. Gum Disease

One-third of the population is genetically predisposed to gum disease! Even though poor oral hygiene, taking certain medications, and smoking are some things that contribute to gum disease, genetics can play a role if you’re experiencing red, swollen, and bleeding gums despite your best oral care efforts. Be sure to tell Dr. Patel if other members of your family have or have had gum disease.

4. Decay

People with certain genes are more likely to develop cavities on their adult teeth. So while consistent brushing and flossing is critical in fighting off cavities, you may need to take extra precaution if you’re genetically predisposed to developing them. Our team might recommend using a mouthwash that contains fluoride, getting fluoride treatments at our office, or limiting your intake of sugary and sticky foods. Ask us for additional tips to prevent tooth decay!

5. Oral Cancer

While you can curb your likelihood of developing oral cancer through lifestyle choices (such as not smoking or drinking alcohol), genetics can also be a factor.

We Can Help You Have Excellent Oral Health!

Even if you’re genetically predisposed to any of the above conditions, there are ways to combat all of them by brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time, flossing at least once a day, maintaining a balanced diet, and visiting our office every six months. At Jackson Smiles Family Dentistry, we offer a variety of preventive, cosmetic, and restorative services so that you can have a beautiful and functional smile. Contact us to schedule an appointment today!

Do you need help getting your oral health back on track?

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