The Importance of Oral Care for Men
Compared to women, there are many health issues that pose a larger risk to men — including oral health conditions such as gum disease and oral cancer. To protect your smile as you age, learn these facts about your dental health risks:
Men are less likely to go to the dentist.
According to a study by the Academy of General Dentistry, men are less likely to visit a dentist than women — instead, they only visit their dentist when they have a problem that needs prompt treatment such as a toothache or trauma to the mouth.
Because men are less likely to visit the dentist, dental issues tend to go undiagnosed, or tend to worsen until pain or other symptoms are present, prompting treatment. Over time, this tends to lead to the need for more dental implants and restorative dentistry services for men. According to the Journal of Aging Research, elderly men have fewer teeth than women by a certain age and wear more dentures.
Men are less likely to care for their oral health.
From dental visits to brushing their teeth after every meal, men tend to neglect their at-home oral care routine. The American Dental Association has noted that roughly 8% more women brush their teeth twice a day than men. Additionally, 20.5 percent of men brush their teeth after every meal compared to 28.7 percent of women, and less than 50% of men brush their teeth twice a day.
Men are more likely to develop gum disease.
According to The American Dental Association, around 34% of men ages 30-54 have gum disease as compared to 23% of women in the same age range. Further research has found that periodontal disease (an advanced form of gum disease), is higher in men (56.4 percent) than in women (38.4 percent).
The Washington State Department of Health has also found that adult women commonly have less severe stages of periodontal disease when compared tomen of every age.
Men are at higher risk of oral cancer.
Men are twice as likely as women to develop oral cancer, which most research attributes to delayed oral care and the use of tobacco and alcohol products (carcinogens that cause cancer).
Oral cancer affects any of the soft tissues in the mouth, including lips, tongue, and cheeks, and the throat. The most common risk factors of oral cancer include:
- Tobacco use.
- Alcohol use.
- Marijuana use.
- Patients 45 years and older.
- Patients who are fair-skinned.
- Patients with a poor diet.
- Patients that are immunocompromised.
Some studies have linked patients with gum disease to an increased risk of oral cancer — another common oral issue in men. This makes taking proper care of your smile essential not just to your dental health but also to your overall health.
Oral Cancer Screenings at Sterling Dental Center
Our comprehensive oral cancer screenings at Sterling Dental Center utilize state-of-the-art cancer detection devices that can identify initial signs of oral cancer before the human eye can see it. Our technology can also help discover soft tissue abnormalities and lesions that might otherwise be missed.
Men are at higher risk for HPV.
Oral human papillomavirus (HPV) infection occurs when a virus enters the body, usually through a cut or small tear inside of the mouth. According to a study by the University of Texas, more men than women suffer from the oral manifestation of this virus — which can lead to oral cancer. Additionally, four times as many men as women suffer from oral cancer as a result of HPV.
Men are at higher risk for dry mouth.
In addition to forming dental issues at a higher rate, men are known to experience higher rates of cardiac issues such as heart disease and high blood pressure. The medications used to control these conditions have also been found to cause dry mouth, which means patients experience a lower rate of saliva production.
Saliva is essential to our oral health because it has a protective effect against bacteria, helping to keep our smiles healthy.
Caring & Experienced Dentists in Shreveport
At Sterling Dental Center, we go beyond patient expectations. From timely, skilled service to our compassionate and empathetic staff, we’re dedicated to what we do and are committed to excellent service. Contact us today to book your next appointment: (318) 374-1411