What’s a gift every dad can appreciate? Peace and quiet! It’s a sure winner, but a longer lasting gift is the gift of good health.
Since June is Men’s Health Month, what better time to help the dads we know and love remember to take a little time to also care for themselves too. Unfortunately, recent studies show that men are less likely than women to take care of their physical health, as well as their oral health. In fact, men are less likely than women to seek preventative dental care and will often neglect their oral health for years, visiting a dentist only when a problem arises.
Because oral health directly affects overall health, here are three tips to help your dad stay healthy throughout the year, and hopefully for many more years to come.
4 Ways to Help Dads Maintain Good Overall Health
- Get an Oral Cancer Screening – Research shows that men have a higher risk of developing oral cancer, particularly over the age of 45. The good news is that oral cancer is very treatable the earlier it’s detected. In fact, 80 to 90% of patients who are diagnosed with oral cancer and treated early survive. At North Seattle Dental, we offer an oral cancer screening that includes the VELscope examination, which is a special cancer screening tool that helps us discover any signs of oral cancer before they become evident in ordinary light. Learn more about how we screen for oral cancer.
- Schedule a Dental Cleaning & Exam – Believe it or not, when it comes to neglecting their oral health, men do a pretty good job of it overall. Maybe it’s because men are more tempted to forgo preventative dental care and only visit the dentist when they actually have some dental pain. Postponing routine dental care isn’t good for your teeth or your overall health, as gum disease or tooth decay can affect the foods you eat, your blood sugar levels. By making at least one annual visit to us, our hygienists can gently clean dad’s teeth while our dentists check for any signs of dental problems. And if any should occur, they can effectively treat them before any dental pain occurs! If it's been a while since your dad has visited a dentist, a comprehensive new patient dental exam will help ease him along the road towards maintaining good oral hygiene.
- Wear a Sports Mouthguard - Most men have 32 good reasons to wear one, or 28, if they've had their wisdom teeth extracted. Whether your dad is a weekend warrior, or just an everyday super-hero, wearing a custom fitted sports mouth guard is an inexpensive way to protect his teeth during various forms of recreating. Losing teeth is costly. especially to replace missing ones! The American Dental Association now recommends wearing mouthguards for over 30 sports and recreational activities - trampoline basketball dunking is still not on this list, yet.
- Maintain Good Daily Oral Hygiene - Who tends to be a bigger slacker when it comes to maintaining oral hygiene? Men. In fact, the average man brushes his teeth less than twice a day, so it's no wonder that he'll lose at least 5 teeth by the time he turns 72. Losing teeth is bad for the pocketbook, and it's bad for the health, since it affects what types of foods can be eaten. Luckily, fitting in a little daily oral hygiene like brushing correctly twice a day, and mastering the art of flossing, can all go a long ways towards keeping your father's teeth healthy, and help decrease any unexpected visits to the dentist.
Father’s day is a great time to appreciate the dad’s in our lives. Reminding them that we want them around for a long time and encouraging them to take care of themselves may also be the one gift they appreciate the most. Taking some time to devote to their oral health will go a long way towards keeping your dad smiling and in good health throughout the year. And if it's been a while since they've been in for a dental exam, or teeth cleaning, please nudge them in the right direction to make an appointment online or call us at (206) 524-1000.
P.S. Looking for a last minute father's day gift? Give Teeth Whitening Gift Certificates!