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The Link Between Oral Health and Overall Health

Sep 26, 2023

The American Dental Association advises brushing your teeth at least twice a day and visiting the dentist regularly, since effective oral hygiene practices not only protect your dental health but also have an impact on your general health. For example, periodontal disease is connected to a number of illnesses, including diabetes, heart disease, respiratory infections, and dementia.

The connection between your dental well-being and overall health

Like other areas of your body, your mouth is filled with bacteria, the majority of which are not harmful. By brushing and flossing your teeth every day, you can maintain proper oral hygiene and control bacterial growth. When you neglect to maintain good dental hygiene, germs can grow unchecked and cause infections, tooth decay, and gum disease.

Pain relievers, antidepressants, and antihistamines can all slow the flow of saliva in your mouth. Your saliva neutralizes acids generated by bacteria and helps to protect you from microbial invasions that can lead to disease.

According to research, several diseases that have an impact on your general health may be influenced by the oral bacteria and inflammation linked to the gum disease periodontitis. Your body's ability to fight against infection might be decreased by conditions like diabetes and HIV/AIDS, which exacerbate oral health issues.

Health issues linked to oral health

Periodontitis: Certain diseases are more closely related to dental health than others. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, periodontal disease affects around 47% of Americans who are 30 years of age and older. Gingivitis causes the gums to swell, become red or painful, and bleed easily in the early stages. If left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis, a more serious form of the disease in which the gums recede, bone is destroyed, and teeth become loose or fall off. Periodontitis causes bacteria to travel from the gums and teeth's surface into the circulation, where they can spread to other organs.

Diabetes: Having diabetes increases your chance of developing gum disease since the condition lowers your body's capacity to fight off infection. According to research, individuals with diabetes are more susceptible to gum disease than those without the condition because they struggle to maintain blood sugar levels under control.

Cardiovascular disease: Stroke, heart disease, and blocked arteries have all been related to the inflammation and infection caused by chronic gum disease, according to research.

Endocarditis: Endocarditis is an infection that damages the lining of your heart. The disease occurs when germs from your mouth enter your circulation and attach to the damaged parts of your heart.

Premature delivery and low birth weight: Periodontitis, if left untreated, has been linked to early birth and low birth weight in pregnant women.

Osteoporosis: This disease weakens the bones in your body. The condition can also damage your jaw bone, resulting in a decrease in jaw bone density and tooth loss.

HIV/AIDS: As a result of the oral lesions that the disease causes, those who have been diagnosed with HIV/AIDS suffer from oral issues.

Tips to help protect your oral health

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day, preferably in the morning and before bed. Use a fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristle toothbrush. Make sure to brush for at least two minutes, covering all surfaces of your teeth.
  • Flossing helps remove plaque and food particles from between your teeth and along the gumline.
  • Visit your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings. This is usually recommended every six months.
  • Be aware of any changes or discomfort in your mouth. If you experience persistent pain, bleeding, swelling, or other unusual symptoms, consult a dentist immediately.

Maintaining good dental hygiene is key to preventing future health issues. Contact Glendale Heights Family Dentistry now to book your next check-up and cleaning. Remember, good oral hygiene is not just about a beautiful smile—it's about safeguarding your overall well-being.

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Glendale Heights Family Dentistry offers comprehensive dental services for all ages. Trust us as your go-to family dentist in Glendale Heights.




Glendale Heights Family Dentistry offers comprehensive dental services for all ages. Trust us as your go-to family dentist in Glendale Heights.

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