Why Women Have Bad Teeth

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Women had poor dental health compared to men back in the hunter-gatherer era, and it got worse as societies turned to farming.

Now an anthropologist is pointing to an overlooked explanation — hormonal and dietary changes related to higher pregnancy rates.

Anthropologists usually argue that women's poor dental health resulted from culture-driven factors, such as cooking duties and the ongoing nibbling that can go along with that. But that narrow focus may overlook biological factors connected to women bearing more and more children in agricultural societies.

Today, men are more likely than women to suffer from gum disease, possibly because men are more likely to ignore dental care, according to Delta Dental. Nonetheless, women do not tend to have better oral health than men, for hormonal reasons, according to the American Academy of Periodontology.

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