Your mouth…it serves for countless purposes in your life and is used on a daily basis; you can’t live without your mouth. If we ever really stopped to think how complex our mouth is, we could stew for hours. Really, think about everything that resides within it right now. You have your teeth, your tongue, your gums and that little dangly thing all the way in the back that nobody ever knows the name of. It’s time we start to appreciate this hole of ours and understand how much work it does for us to complete basic tasks throughout our day.
With all the wonderful, naturally beautiful biological processes our mouths undergo 24/7, there are also big and bad dangers in the world that can damage it, unfortunately. Like any part of our bodies, the mouth can contract disease, injury and pain due to many reasons. Whether it is burning our tongue on that piping sip of coffee, (which leaves a sandpaper-like taste for the rest of the day) to serious cancerous diagnoses, our mouth faces it all.
We owe it to ourselves and our precious puckers to take care as much as possible and nurture, clean and monitor the inside of our mouth. Believe it or not, our actions can make a huge difference in the overall health within our mouths. Both little and big actions make a difference. So buy a new toothbrush, book your dental appointments and open up wide to read 10 secrets you didn’t know that lie inside your mouth…
10. Kidney-like Stones In Your Mouth
No, not like those amazing Rolling Stones in your mouth… the bad kind. If you haven’t noticed, your mouth is usually full of wet saliva. If it’s not, you probably just ate the saltiest hot dog, smoked marijuana or are suffering a major anxiety attack where you’re hyperventilating. Your teeth are swimming in this saliva pool. Keep in mind, your saliva contains a ton of calcium and it can build up over time. When this build up happens in the salivary ducts, it is able to for form crystallized rocks that are similar to a kidney stone in the mouth. The stones can range in size, but can grow up to 2.8 inches, causing extreme discomfort and pain. The causes for this are not totally clear, but it’s possible connected to dehydration, poor eating habits and medication. These stones are prone to adult males, mostly. Thankfully, there are many methods to remove the stones ranging from sucking on sour candies, shock waves, massaging the area and more drastically, surgery.
9. Spit Increases Sexual Appetite
Although we only really notice our spit when it’s landing on our crush’s face as we attempt to woo them with a joke, there are now reasons we can not hate our spit so much anymore. Many philematologists (people who study kissing) have reportedly confirmed that roughly 90% of human cultures practice kissing as well as some animals. Kissing helps to release dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin and stir up a whole lot of passion. Men reportedly prefer wetter kisses based on the fact that saliva contains testosterone. Testosterone helps to stimulate women’s libido therefore increasing her desire and willingness to engage in sex. So when most men try to engage in the art of french kissing, they are subconsciously trying to put their mate in the mood to share a little frisky time. There is always a reason behind the things that we humans do and thanks to hard working philematologists, we are getting to the bottom of these lip-biting concerns.
8. Saliva Can Reveal Your Age
Believe it or not, our fingerprints are not the only thing in our bodies that help define who we are and everything about us. The DNA in our saliva changes over time. As the DNA goes through a process called methylation, it helps to activate some genes and shut other off. As we age, changes occur that alter how those genes express themselves. There is a focus on two genes, that when studied can peg a person’s age. The exact age of the specimen studied will not be pinpointed, but a range of five years – give or take – can be estimated. This revelation can help, medically, in terms of doctors being able to decide what treatments can work most effectively with a certain patient depending on their age. Although it is not the actual age being projected, a biological age is. There are many age-related illnesses, so this is very advantageous in the medical world.
7. The Tongue And The Skeleton
Your tongue is made up of so many different muscles, it really is amazing. Not only is it the most sensitive muscle in our entire body, it is also the strongest muscle. It is the only muscle that can sense taste. Once the muscle senses taste, it sends signals to the brain allowing for comprehension. There are roughly 2,000 to 10,000 taste buds on our tongues that die off and replenish every 10-14 days. It only takes roughly 7 seconds for food to travel from our tongue and mouth down into our stomachs. Before we have time to even get our toothbrush, our tongue is acting as a natural cleanser and is cleaning our teeth. We can always tell if our tongue is in top healthy shape by checking its coloration. A pale pink tongue is healthiest in comparison to any other color. A yellowish tongue links to fever and stomach problems and a white looking tongue indicates fungal infections.
6. Your Teeth Are Alive
Your pearly whites are living in a world on their own. They hold their own blood supply and nerves. There are three parts making up an entire tooth. The dentin makes up most of the tooth whereas the pulp contains the blood vessels and nerves, and the root holds everything in place. The enamel covering the tooth is actually the hardest thing in our entire bodies. This is no reason to start testing this fact by proving its strength opening a beer bottle with your teeth. Please don’t, seriously it may not end well. If any adult does try this test, perhaps they may damage 1 out of their 32 teeth which is the average count. This differs from children who hold a count of 20 teeth by age 3 and later develop their permanent teeth between ages 5 and 6. At any age, keep your winning smile bright by brushing 2-3 minutes a day. This is opposed to the average time length most humans brush at 45- 70 seconds.
5. Your Gums Are Talking To You
Your gums are insanely important inside your mouth and how you upkeep them is even more important. Healthy gums have a light pink coloring and a very firm texture. If you notice any bleeding or sensitivity when touching or brushing around your gums, this indicates that something is wrong and they are unhealthy. Other indications of unhealthy gums include gums receding away from the teeth. Any loose teeth or sensitivity to heat or cold does not look good in the healthy gums department. Obviously, if you notice any pus oozing from your gums or if your teeth actually fall out, it is time to take a trip to your dentist. Don’t feel so unlucky in the health department just yet, you can totally be the one to blame for your receding gums. Think about when you brush your teeth, are you aggressively pushing back and forth quickly? If yes, you can be damaging and ripping at your gums because they are quite sensitive. To fix this common bad habit, try brushing up and down on a 45 degree angle with short, gentle and circular strokes.
4. Oral Herpes Is No Joke
This is probably one of the most devastating and scary diagnosis you can be given among the many. Simply at the fact that herpes has no cure and can only be treated. Yes, this embarrassing and uncomfortable disease is with you for life. The symptoms can lay dormant but do reappear during stressful times throughout life. The symptoms of oral herpes include painful sores on your lips, gums, tongue, roof of the mouth and on your cheeks, it can even spread down to your chin and neck. The sores resemble blisters may bleed. In teens and young adults, painful throat ulcers can occur. Before the actual blisters appear, there is a painful, burning and itching sensation that occurs where the sores eventually turn up. They can later scab up before vanishing but can make it extremely difficult to eat and drink. In severe cases, if dehydration occurs, one must head to the emergency room as this is severe and dangerous. In order to avoid getting oral herpes, avoid touching infected saliva, mucous membranes or skin.
3. Luscious Lips
Your pucker serves for many more purposes than just kissing into your selfies. Not only do they serve as an opening for drinking and food consumption, they help to articulate sound and speech. It’s also a major erogenous zone to top it all off. The skin on your lip is 3-5 cellular layers which is extremely thin in comparison to the skin on your face which is roughly 16 layers. Your lips do not produce sweat glands, nor do they sweat oil protection to keep them smooth and regulate warmth. Sometimes your pucker might chap up and crack, especially during those pesky winter months. This layering is the reason behind that. With all that lip balm and lipstick being put on, we feel like our lips are healthier, more plump and smooth again. For women, full and luscious lips are a sign of a lot of estrogen, making them more sexually attractive towards men as they are a natural biological reader of fertility. Smoochy, smoochy.
2. The Uvula
It is time the world protests to officially rename the uvula to that “dangly thing at the back of your mouth,” because honestly, isn’t that what we all call it? Science is actually trying to figure out its actual purpose and why exactly it is there. We do know that it helps to guide the flow of food and liquid down our throats. It also helps to induce a gag reflex when we don’t really like all that food we just put down our throats. Its primary purpose has been proven as a major accessory to speech. We are able to live without this body part and some people have had it surgically removed in a procedure called uvulopalatopharyngoplasty. Some of the patients who had their uvula removed were studied and it was concluded that the uvula excretes a lot of saliva in a short amount of time. Unfortunately, it has also been linked with sleep apnea, snoring, chronic coughing and SIDS.
1. It’s Important To Smile
It has been proven that 96% of people perceive an attractive smile as appealing. In terms of the sexes, studies proved women were reportedly smiling on average 8 times a day compared to males at an average of 2 times per day. Flashing your pearly whites conveys your emotions to the world, it messages how you’re feeling and is a universal sign of happiness and content. Reasons for smiling more often relate to an improved smile due to dental hygiene. Feeling confident about your smile improves one’s attitude causing one to smile more. “The perfect mouth” was drawn out by several plastic surgeons resulting in very specific requirements. The width must be approximately 1.6 times the bottom of the nose. Your lower teeth should not be visible when your lips are open and should remain below your upper lip.
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