If the thought of bacteria in your mouth makes your skin crawl, your reaction is certainly understandable. However, the Riverside dentists at Riverside Dental Group have some surprising news for you: not all germs are created equally. Residing in that warm, moist environment known as your mouth are anywhere from 10 to 50 billion oral bacteria. Some are “bad guys” and some are “good guys.” Among the germs in your mouth are those responsible for dental health issues such as cavities, gum disease, and chronic bad breath. Their neighbors inside your oral cavity are other germs that protect you.

Mouth Analogies

Think about the ecosystems in our environment. Forests, for example, are home to a wide array of plants, trees, and vegetation that keep animals fed, hydrated, and protected, though there are elements off the environment that are poisonous and destructive. Your mouth has similar properties to a forest, providing a hospitable home for 50-75 different types of germs. Just like animals in the forest, the germs in your mouth tend to stick with their own kind, claiming parts of the real estate in your mouth for their own home. The back of your tongue is considered prime property, much like a gated community, where germs can reside in a protected environment. These are often the germs that cause foul breath as they are the hardest to get to with your toothbrush.

Bad Habits

Looking to lower the curb appeal in the “neighborhood” known as your mouth? Smoking will do the trick. A healthy mouth full of “good” bacteria can be compromised when you use tobacco products. This allows the dregs of your mouth’s society to move in and bring the value of real estate down.  Chemicals from smoking confuse your body so that it attacks good bacteria instead of destructive pathogens. This makes it easier for germs to cause gum disease and tooth decay. To give your mouth and body a fighting chance, keep hydrated, eat a healthy diet, avoid tobacco, brush and floss twice-a-day, and visit your dentist twice-a-year.

Dental Checkups from Riverside, CA Dentists

Contact our Dental Associates of Riverside at (951) 369-1001. Our family dentist office serves patients throughout Riverside County, including Corona, Temecula, and Moreno Valley.