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Are Oral Health Issues Genetic?

Did you know oral health issues can be genetic? Yes, your genes can play a large role in your overall oral health. How strong your teeth are, whether they are crooked or straight, the potential to develop gum disease, and even the ease with which you get cavities can be passed down from generation to generation.  

Cavity Prone
Even if you are diligent about brushing and flossing, you could still be prone to cavities due to certain genetic variations. Researchers at the University of Pittsburg School of Dental Medicine are hoping that their findings will help lead to new ways to treat patients who are susceptible to tooth decay. They have found a connection between a gene and periodontitis disease that may affect 30% of the population.

Oral Cancer
Oral cancers are so dangerous because usually they aren’t caught until they are well developed. While lifestyle choices, such as tobacco use, alcohol use, and diet, are the major causal factors, there are genetic markers that indicate a higher risk for oral cancer.

Cleft Lip or Palate
This birth defect is more likely to occur in children of parents who also had cleft lip or palate – indicating genes as a major factor.  

Crooked Teeth
If you have misaligned teeth, the odds are others in your family do as well. Genetics determine your face shape and size, which is a factor in whether there is enough room for teeth. Over and under bite, gaps, crowding, and misaligned teeth can be the result of your genetics.  

Fortunately, your diet, a proper dental care routine, and regular checkups can help turn around most of these oral health conditions. We can come up with treatment plans that will allow you to enjoy a beautiful and healthy smile, despite what your genes have in store for you.

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