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February 20th, 2020

How Your Smile is Affected by Genetics

Your beautiful red hair flows effortlessly in curly waves around your face and your green eyes glow like a Siberian Tiger. Genetics has played a huge role in the way you look and even in some of your quirky personality traits but did you know that genetics also affects your oral health? Maybe you thought you were just unlucky to have a crooked smile. Here are some things that your relatives may have passed on to you through their DNA.

Prone to Cavities

Do you have a lot of cavities? If your mouth is full of fillings and you find yourself in the dentist’s chair more often than you would like, it may be caused by genetics. Check with your parents and even grandparents to see if they have experienced the same issues. You may have a genetic deficiency of a certain protein that causes premature tooth decay. If your parents have this problem, you may want to be more diligent with your oral health routine. You could also have passed this on to your children.

Also, Check- https://fortmcmurraysmiles.com/what-are-the-3-main-types-of-cavities/

Oral Cancer

Cancer is a scary word and yes, it can be linked to your genetic makeup. Factors that increase your chances of getting oral cancer are things like, smoking, alcohol consumption, and lifestyle choices. Another key factor is if you have family members who have had cancer. Your dentist can perform a screening for oral cancer to identify any pre-cancerous lesions or note other indicators of the disease. Contact your dentist to have an oral cancer screening performed annually.

Crooked Teeth

Yes, that crooked smile of yours can be cute and charming, but if your teeth are a mess and completely misaligned it may be due to your genes. The size and shape of your jaw are determined by your genetics and this also affects how your teeth will grow in. If your parents had braces to straighten their teeth, the likelihood of you having to do the same is pretty high. Genetics is also the reason you may have an overbite, underbite or even an extra tooth!

Periodontal Disease

You can thank your parents again for this one. Gum disease may also be a result of genetic mutation. Some research points to links to your DNA and this affects your immunity and inflammatory response. This means you could be more susceptible to periodontal disease.

You love the way you look and are proud to share your parent’s heritage. Just make sure you are aware of the indicators of genetic issues when it comes to your oral health. Check with your dentist if you are concerned about anything inside your mouth and keep those important bi-annual appointments.

Dr. Gurshant

Medically reviewed by Dr. Gurshant Grewal - a Registered Dentist on February 20th, 2020

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