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Can Oral Health Issues Be Genetic?

Have you ever wondered how much of your oral health issues are because of what you do (or don’t do) and how much are completely out of your control? Just like with other parts of your body, your teeth, gums, and mouth are affected by the genes passed down to you, whether you like it or not. These are some common dental issues that can be affected by genetics:

granddaughter and grandmother smile at each other knowing genetics plays a role in oral health

Teeth Misalignment

Since genes affect the size of your jaw, that means that they can also affect how straight your teeth are. For example, if you’ve inherited a smaller jaw from your family, you may be at a higher risk of crowding. Gaps, overbites, underbites, missing teeth, and extra teeth are also common misalignment issues.

Tooth Decay

How susceptible you are to cavities has recently been linked to specific genetic variations. Not to mention the fact that the state of your saliva (as in how much your mouth produces and how well this saliva neutralizes acids) as well as the alignment of your teeth are both affected by genes and both contribute to your risk of tooth decay.

Gum Disease

Developing gum disease is mainly caused by poor oral hygiene, but some people are genetically predisposed to gum disease, meaning they have a higher risk of developing it than others.

Remember that just because your genes make you more susceptible to a certain oral health issue, doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll develop the condition. If you have a higher risk, it’s important to be aware of it so you can take additional care when looking after your dental health.

If you’re dealing with any of the issues we’ve just mentioned, or you need some extra tips to help those problems from developing, contact us at Grafton Dental Care!

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