Your Oral Health

The Massachusetts Dental Society (MDS) is dedicated to educating the public about the importance of oral health and the connection between a healthy mouth and overall well-being. Browse this page for trusted information on a wide variety of oral health topics produced by the MDS and the American Dental Association. 

Baby Oral Health

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Baby Oral Health
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As a parent, you know that your baby's health is the most important priority. By showing children at a very young age the importance of taking care of their teeth and gums every day, parents will be providing them with a lifetime of healthy smiles. Learn more about baby oral health including teething, thumbsucking and pacifier use, baby bottle tooth decay, brushing and flossing, and first dental visits. 

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Fluoride and Fluoridation

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Fluoride and Fluoridation
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You may have heard of a good-for-your-teeth substance called fluoride, but do you know exactly what it is? Fluoride is a naturally-occurring mineral found in water sources across the globe. When swallowed or applied to the teeth, ­ fluoride helps prevent cavities in children and adults by making the outer surface of teeth more resistant to the acid attacks that cause tooth decay. Learn more about fluoride, its uses and benefits, and the importance of community water fluoridation. 

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Mouth Sores

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Mouth Sores
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They are annoying, painful, and embarrassing and can interfere with smiling, eating, and speaking. They affect millions of people every year and are caused by a number of different factors. While some mouth sores are more of a nuisance than anything else, others can be especially harmful to your dental health and overall health. Learn more about oral lesions, their various causes, how they can be treated, and what you can do to prevent them.


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Mouthguards

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Mouthguards

Playing sports is often about winning and losing. But losing should not include your teeth. Just as helmets, shoulder pads, and knee pads are worn to protect against sports-related injuries, mouthguards—also called mouth protectors—are an equally important piece of protective gear. Learn more about preventing mouth injuries and the Grin and Wear It campaign, which educates parents, coaches, and children on the importance of wearing mouthguards during contact sports.

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Oral Health is Overall Health

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Oral Health is Overall Health
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Your teeth and gums hold important clues to other health issues. Research shows that poor oral health can be a sign of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, premature births, and osteoporosis. Learn more about the association between your oral health and your overall well-being. 

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Oral Piercings

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Oral Piercings
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Can having a tongue, lip, or cheek piercing affect your oral health? Yes! Learn about the risks of oral piercings and the best ways to prevent infection and oral injuries from them.  

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Smokeless Tobacco

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Smokeless Tobacco
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Think smokeless tobacco is safer than cigarettes? Think again. Smokeless tobacco has been linked to oral cancer, tooth decay, gum disease, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, and nicotine addiction. It causes bad breath and stained teeth. And it’s becoming increasingly popular. Learn more about the dangers of smokeless tobacco. 


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Soft Drinks and Tooth Decay

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Soft Drinks and Tooth Decay
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The consequences of regular consumption of soft drinks on your dental health may be a little hard to swallow. Many school-aged children and teens today have come to consider drinking soda and other sugar-filled beverages to be a regular part of their daily routine. As a result, the dental community is seeing more evidence of tooth decay in young people. Soft drinks also provide large amounts of calories to kids, who already do not meet national dietary guidelines and are experiencing obesity in epidemic proportions. Learn more about the effects that drinking too many soft drinks can have on oral health. 


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The Dental FLOSSophy

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The Dental FLOSSophy
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Brushing and cleanings alone aren’t enough to keep cavities at bay. Both parents and children alike should be aware that there’s one other habit that should be added to children's oral health regimen: dental flossing. Learn more about the importance of flossing, when to start, and how to do it. 



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Word of Mouth Newsletter

Summer Fall 2016 WOM
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Word of Mouth Newsletter
Summer Fall 2016 WOM

Summer-Fall 2016

Oral Piercing—An Oral Health Don't 

This fall saw multitudes of students returning to college at many of the Boston-area schools, but some may be returning home for Thanksgiving or winter break with more than just their laundry to be washed. While many consider having their ears pierced a rite of passage, today’s teens and young adults are often turning to another type of piercing as a fashion statement—oral piercing. The Massachusetts Dental Society discourages patients from getting oral piercings because of their serious oral health complications.


Also in this issue:
Kids and Tooth Grinding
You Can Help Reduce Opioid Abuse
Don't Toss the Floss
Smokeless Tobacco Taken Out of the Ballgame in Boston

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