Prehistoric Humans Had Better Teeth
Although most of us would equate better modern hygiene with improving dental health; new research indicates otherwise. To reach his findings, Alan Cooper, the director of the Australian Centre for Ancient DNA, compared the teeth of prehistoric humans to those of their modern-day descendants. Shockingly, Cooper found that we have more dental problems than our ancestors, even though we take better care of our teeth.
What’s the Reason?
According to Cooper, his study found that evolving dietary habits played an indirect role in the decline of human dental health. Over time, as human beings switched to farming from hunter/gatherer societies, they started consuming more grains and sugars which changed the kinds of bacteria which live in their mouths.
A Real Problem
Sadly, most Americans eat diets which promote cavities; and statistics prove it. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that about 50 percent of all U.S. adults suffer from some type of gum disease, while about two in ten harbor at least one untreated cavity inside their mouths.
These dental issues can lead to serious problems, especially if they go untreated for extended periods of time. Not only can they lead to expensive, unpleasant restorative treatments; they can cause infections and tooth loss.
Maintaining Good Dental Health
To ward off problems, it’s important to brush and floss regularly. With that being said, since many dental problems occur without offering much warning; it’s also very important to see an experienced dentist regularly for six-month dental exams.