Genetic Testing and Dental Health

Genetic tests these days are everywhere, meaning that they are becoming more and more popular for determining what we may be at risk for. However, at this time, this testing can’t determine how likely you are to develop cavities versus someone else on the street.

We know that there are several commercially marketed tests that say they can measure both the risk of a disease, as well as susceptibility to a future disease. They do this by taking a look at your DNA and searching for hints that might indicate that you are at risk for these conditions. In order to take the test, they gather a saliva sample and examine it in a lab. Occasionally, these tests are followed up with a consultation with a medical professional.

Keep in mind that many people will have the DNA marker for a disease, but that doesn’t mean everyone will develop that disease. This is because many of these diseases, including gum disease and cavities, have a lot to do with both your environment and your lifestyle. These factors are more likely to determine what you develop rather than any genetic marker can.

Lifestyle Matters

If you don’t know what you can do in your day to day life to prevent cavities, keep your lifestyle in mind. Are you a smoker? What do you eat and drink? How often to brush your teeth and floss? These questions will help you determine how likely you are to develop cavities or other issues with your teeth.

Genetic testing may one day be even better at predicting future oral health, but we aren’t there just yet. At the moment, the dentist’s tools, x-rays, and probing measurements are the best and most accurate ways to know what you are at risk for and where you stand in regards to your oral health. Your dentist may even be able to predict where you will stand in the future!

Stay Healthy!

In order to keep your mouth healthy and your teeth pearly white, the American Dental Association recommends that you do the following:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes. Use a fluoride toothpaste for extra protection against decay and cavities.
  • Clean between your teeth at least once a day. This means that you should make flossing a regular habit!
  • Eat a balanced, healthy diet. Limit your sugar intake, as sugar is bad for both your teeth and your waistline.
  • See your dentist regularly for checkups and maintenance. This will ensure that any diseases are found quickly and treated before they become more serious!

Schedule Your Appointment with Kruckman Family Dentistry

While we may not be able to use genetic testing just yet to tell you what diseases you will get, we certainly can take a look at what you’re doing now to keep your mouth healthy! Contact the professionals at Kruckman Family Dentistry and schedule your dentist visit. We proudly serve residents of Waconia and all the surrounding areas. Reach out today, and we will see you and your smile soon!