Fresh breath has got to be number one on the “before you kiss someone” mental check list. That would be just a breath before using chapstik. How might thinking about the details of oral health have the potential to ruin the moment, especially if you’re wondering if the one who you’re about to lock lips with brushes maybe once a day at most. Although most of us are concerned about fresh breath, do we consider how smooching itself can affect our smiles and all else associated with them. As it turns out kissing can have some pretty interesting effects on your oral health. This can involve anything from your teeth and gums to your breath. Like those wedding vows, this could be for better or for worse.
Benefits of Kissing
The benefits to locking lips should seem obvious, like increasing saliva flow. This will result in food particles and plaque being washed away more quickly. After all, you don’t want the remains of that donut you couldn’t resist after lunch, ending up in someone else’s mouth. Gross! So saliva helps to keep your mouth cleaner and also neutralizes harmful acids from certain foods and drinks. An important function of saliva is to aid in digestion. It makes speaking easier by lubricating your teeth and other oral tissues. Bottom line is that there are benefits to a sloppy kiss.
Another big benefit to kissing is the exchange of bacteria. This actually helps improve your immune system. A 10 second kiss can introduce more than 80 million bacteria which is a pretty significant exchange. These critters help build resistance to infection and other diseases.
Of course, not all bacteria are “good” bacteria. Imagine sharing a kiss with someone who has gum disease. First of all there is the issue of foul mouth odor. Often potent enough to make you almost pass out. This sharing of bacteria can have a seriously negative effect on you own oral health. Some bacteria can introduce acids into the mouth that contribute to tooth decay. Truly the gift that goes on giving.
Risks of Kissing
Kissing also presents the possibility of transferring diseases like cold sores that thrive in or near the mouth. Ouch! It should also be obvious that if your partner does not practice good oral hygiene they may be sharing diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis. Such conditions can be contagious. Scarlet red lips may be sexy, but scarlet reds gums, not so much.
So how can you be ready for an encounter that may lead to swapping of saliva? The simple answer is to brush regularly. Brushing twice a day reduces your risk of cavities and kills bacteria, which contribute to a cleaner, healthier mouth and fresh breath. Flossing is also a big plus as it helps get rid of food chunks, plaque and bacteria that you may not wish to share with your partner. So before you have your next kiss, make sure you scrub away any reason
That may cause them to have second thoughts.