Let’s face it, nobody enjoys spit. It’s some pretty gross stuff. But to all of us at my Charlotte dental office, it’s one of the most useful and fascinating things about the mouth. Think we’re crazy? Let us explain.
That’s A Whole Lotta Spit
On average, we produce 25,000 quarts of spit in our lifetime. That’s plenty to fill a standard size swimming pool. Pretty gross, huh? Well, not necessarily.
Spit is extremely important for a healthy, cavity-free mouth. Spit helps remove food debris that may stick around after a meal. The more spit we produce, the more food is rinsed away and the better off your teeth are. Saliva can also help neutralize acid which may protect your pearly whites from decay. If you’re not producing enough spit, chances are you have a chronically dry mouth. This isn’t something to take lightly. An inadequate supply of spit could increase your risk for decay as well as oral infections. Is all that spit still pretty gross? We think a healthy mouth is much better.
Bone Marrow and Spit
This may seem like an odd pair, but trust us, it’s pretty cool. Bone marrow is typically used in the treatment of blood cancers, and the prevalence of these cancers is extremely high. Every three minutes, someone in the U.S. is diagnosed with a blood cancer. Which makes bone marrow really important. But not any patient can use any bone marrow. There has to be a match. BeTheMatch.org is an organization that encourages people to join the bone marrow registry by simply swabing the inside of the cheek and submitting it to their library where they’ll scan the registry to help find matches for patients.
Get to Know Yourself
Again, with a little swab of the cheek, you’re able to access so much information about who you are. I’m talking about your DNA, and yes, it can be analyzed through just a smidgen of spit. When the swab is rubbed against the cheek, you’re picking up cells. Inside each cell there is a nucleus, which contains the chromosomes that house your DNA. While you won’t be able to see your DNA from your spit, there are labs that will analyze it for you and help interpret what they find.
At our dental office in Charlotte, we don’t mind spit so much because it helps keep your mouth clean and washes away bad bacteria. But it’s still really important to see us regularly so we can keep an eye on things. Even if it’s been awhile since you’ve seen a dentist, give us call today!