Genetic Advances May Shape Future Dental Visits

There may be a day when a dental visit doesn’t solely include a look into one’s mouth.

An analysis of how genes are being switched on and off in relation to what they do to the teeth could be incorporated into a dental visit, according to a research team at the University of Adelaide School of Dentistry.

The detailed report appears in the Australian Dental Journal.

The epigenetic factors for each person help to determine healthy and unhealthy states of the mouth. With this research, dentists could use genetics to add more information to properly treat a patient. The treatment could be tailored to each patient, since the exact genetic environment present in one’s mouth is different for each person.

This information could be used to more efficiently treat periodontitis and oral cancer, among other issues. In the case of oral cancer, using genetics may lead to more instances of early detection, which would increase the survival rate.