The Pros and Cons of Kissing for Your Oral Hygiene
Nothing ruins a passionate moment like thinking about the germs you’re potentially exchanging. Fresh breath will be the least of your worries if you’re contemplating the millions of nasties you just introduced to your mouth. However, it’s not as bad as you might think, and your oral hygiene can actually benefit from a loving kiss.
Locking lips increases saliva production, which can benefit your oral and digestive health in several ways. Saliva helps to:
- Neutralize acidity: Acids from the food you eat can wear down your enamel, weakening the structure and exposing the discolored dentin underneath. Saliva can help to neutralize this, creating a safer environment for your teeth.
- Wash away food particles: Food gets stuck and if you don’t rinse or drink, those particles remain.
- Break down food: Digestion begins in your mouth, with your saliva playing a small role in a digestive process that finishes in your gut.
- Fights germs: Saliva can also help to fight the germs in your mouth, although kissing will introduce more of these, as discussed below.
- Prevents Dry Mouth: The less saliva you have, the dryer your mouth will be, which can lead to bad breath and other oral hygiene issues.
- Protects Enamel: Saliva contains minerals that can protect your teeth and strengthen your enamel. These minerals include calcium and fluoride, two very important compounds for dental health.
No one wants an overly moist kiss, but at least your oral health can benefit in some way when your partner goes over the top.
The average kiss also introduces millions of bacteria to your mouth. Bacteria has a pretty bad reputation, often deservedly so, but these bugs aren’t necessarily the same ones that cause disease and sickness. They actually support your oral microbiome, helping to boost your immune system.
By introducing new bacteria, you’re testing your immune system and helping it to build defenses to protect against future diseases. Your immune system is supported not by abstaining from bugs but by introducing them in safe amounts. It’s like adding data into a machine learning algorithm—every addition provides new information.
Not all bacteria is good and some can cause serious harm. You’re introducing millions of these bugs to your immune system every time you kiss and some of those may be harmful, increasing your risk of contracting an infection.
If your partner has gum disease or an infection, they could be transferring it to you. Cold sores and other infections can be spread through the saliva, and the warm, moist environment provides the perfect breeding ground for these bacteria to multiply.
And you don’t always know if your partner has a healthy mouth because many oral infections aren’t visible at a single glance.
Kissing can also introduce acids from your partner’s mouth into yours. If they have a particularly acidic mouth, whether because they recently consumed acidic foods or have bad GERD, they could be introducing harmful acids that damage your teeth.
The best way to keep your mouth fresh, healthy, and kissable, is to brush at least twice a day, rinse after eating, and don’t delay seeing your dentist when you feel a little pain or notice some excessive bleeding.
And if you want the whitest and most kissable teeth, pick up a Snow Teeth Whitening Kit today. Snow is a safe and effective way to whiten your teeth at home and it’s available for the fraction of the price of a dental tray from your dentist.