Dental Advice for Sugar Lovers

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All in the Family: Dental Maladies That Run in the Family

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You may not have inherited your father's eye color, but there's a good chance that you may be dealing with some dental issues that were passed on by him. In fact, there are several dental-related problems that tend to run in families. While it's always possible to learn bad habits from your parents, there may be more to it than that. Just knowing about the tendency for the below issues to be passed on via your DNA could give you a heads-up so that you can be ready to take action and prevent further problems down the road. Your mother, your father, and others making up your ancestral lineup may have contributed to the below issues, so read on to learn more.


If you seem to get more cavities than the next guy, it may not have anything to do with your eating or brushing habits. Scientists have discovered that those who carry the beta-defensin 1 (DEFB1) gene may end up having more cavities than usual in permanent teeth. You can take action to fight back, however. Speak to your dentist about prescription toothpaste, special dental rinses, and sealants. Frequent visits that will detect cavities early can help prevent further damage caused by cavities.

Crooked Teeth

Just like your mannerisms, your misaligned teeth might be the result of your genes. The size and shape of your jaw determine the likelihood of having teeth that don't line up properly, and that means that you might not be the only one in your family in need of orthodontic work. If you are plagued with an overbite, an underbite, gaps in teeth, or crowded teeth, you might need to get some hardware onboard. Issues caused by misaligned teeth are not just cosmetic—misshapen teeth can cause decay and gum disease when teeth don't meet properly.

Cleft Palate or Cleft Lip

This birth defect can be inherited. If your parents had a cleft palate or lip, chances are you and your children could also suffer this malady. Early surgeries to correct this issue are now commonplace.

Oral Cancer

This type of cancer can be deadly and can be very difficult to detect. The signs can be subtle. Sometimes it's just some tiny dots inside your checks, which are easy to miss. While lifestyle factors like smoking and drinking are often the main cause of oral cancer, you might also inherit an enhanced risk. With the signs of oral cancer being so easy to miss, regular cleanings and exams are very important. Dentists know the signs of oral cancer and their observations might save your life.

Visit a general dentistry practice to learn more.