Submitted by: Dr. Scott Reader, DMD, PA, Your Hometown Dentist, One Senior Place Resident Business

Scott Reader DMDLet’s forget about our teeth for now and talk about what else is inside our mouth.  Good oral health goes beyond brushing and flossing.

When you open your mouth and look in the mirror, everything that isn’t a tooth is covered by a protective lining called the oral mucosa.  It defends the body from germs and other irritant that enter the mouth.

Our gums are the pinkish tissue that surrounds and supports our teeth.  Healthy gums are firm, cover the entire root of the tooth, and do not bleed when brushed

The jaws give your face its shape and your mouth the structure it needs for chewing and speech.  Our tongue is the most powerful muscle covered in specialized mucosal tissue that includes taste buds.  The tongue is important to oral health and is considered an integral part of the body’s digestive system. 

People have three sets of salivary glands in the mouth and the neck.  These glands produce saliva, , which contains special enzymes that help break down food, making it easier to swallow.

The Uvula is the small flap of tissue which hangs down at the back of the throat.  It plays a role in speech and keeping the mouth and throat moist.  The last part of the mouth that I’d like to mention is the frenulum linguae, a flap of oral mucosa that connects the tongue to the floor of the mouth.

The next time you’re brushing your teeth spend a minute looking at these other parts of the mouth and remember it’s important to take care of them as well.

Dr. Scott Reader is a family and cosmetic dentist, specializing in Lumineers and the revolutionary Snap-On Smile.  His office is located at 7185 Murrell Road in Viera.  All seniors may schedule for a complimentary consultation by calling the office at 321-253-9588 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Reader.