Oral Health Affects More Than Your Mouth
In April, we celebrate World Health Day — a day that brings awareness to global health issues. This is a good time to also remind patients of how oral health affects not just your teeth, mouth and gums but your systemic, or entire body health, too. What’s more, the condition of your mouth has an impact on the quality of your life and possibly your longevity, too. Would you like to learn more about this connection?
It’s often said that your oral health is a window to your overall health because it gives clues to problems that might show up in the rest of your body. Since your mouth is an entry point for your respiratory and digestive tracts, the bacteria in your mouth can easily travel to these other bodily systems. While good dental hygiene can keep bacterial levels low, conditions such as tooth decay and gum disease, when left untreated, can cause serious health problems that we want you to be aware of. Disease that are linked to oral health include:
- Endocarditis — This is an infection of the lining of the inside of your heart chambers or valves. It is caused when bacteria or germs from another body part, like your mouth, spreads through the bloodstream and to your heart.
- Cardiovascular disease — While the link between oral health and heart disease is not completely clear, it is suggested that oral bacteria might be the cause of the inflammation and infection that cause clogged arteries.
- Birth complications — Gum disease has been connected to birth problems such as premature birth and low birth weight.
Please feel free to share this information with the rest of your family. We often find that people don’t realize how important their dental health is. If at any time you have questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us.