Kissing is not universal among human beings, but kissing behavior is also not unique to human beings. Primates frequently kiss one another, and dogs and cats lick and nuzzle one another.
The scientific study of kissing, philematology, doesn’t understand exactly why humans started kissing, but believe it came to be a means of passing on information regarding biological compatibility via pheromone chemical signals, in addition to supporting social bonding and expressing love.
Even so, before you snuggle up to your loved one for some smooching on Valentine’s Day, it behooves you, (and your loved one), to make sure your dental hygiene is in good health, because a kiss is actually more than just a kiss.
Kissing stimulates saliva, which helps to fight cavities, but if the person you’re kissing has poor dental and overall health, you might get stuck with some unwanted germs, illnesses or diseases.
The American Dental Association recommends the following tips to ensure your smile is a proper instrument of love:
Cavities Can Be Contagious
Whether through kissing or something as simple as sharing utensils, the bacteria that causes cavities can spread to another person. Brush twice a day for two minutes and clean between your teeth once a day for cavity-free kisses.
Beware Bad Breath
Bacteria is a big perpetrator of bad breath, brushing and flossing regularly are exceptionally important. Over-the-counter antimicrobial mouthwashes or sugarless gum can also keep bacteria in check. Both can freshen your breath and get saliva flowing. (always look for the ADA Seal of Acceptance)
Share a Life (But Not a Toothbrush)
A big step in relationships is keeping a toothbrush at each other’s place. But, make sure you each have your own because sharing toothbrushes also means sharing germs.
Brighten Your Smile
Nothing is more attractive than a confident smile. If whitening makes you feel better about yours, talk to your dentist about which option is best. There are several over-the-counter products, or you can get an in-office treatment at your dentist, which would be included in American Dental Group discounts.
Smoking Isn’t Attractive
Smoking is bad for your breath and stains your teeth – not to mention super bad for overall health. Smoking has a profound effect on how you smell and taste. People who use tobacco twice as likely to get gum disease as someone who doesn’t smoke. Smokers are also more at risk for oral cancer.
Don’t Forget About the Dentist!
A good relationship with and regular visits to your dentist can help keep your dental hygiene at its best all year long. Your dentist can help keep you healthy, discuss any concerns and give more advice on keeping your smile fresh.