Maintaining good oral health is important not just for a bright smile but for overall health and wellbeing. There is a strong link between oral health and overall health that has been well established by research studies. The mouth is often called the gateway to the body as it is the entry point for many things that can affect overall health. Let’s explore the connection between oral health and overall health in more detail. If you experience a dental emergency in Peoria AZ, it’s important to seek immediate care from an Emergency Dentist Peoria AZ to ensure the best possible outcome for your oral health.
Oral Health and Bacteria
The mouth is home to a variety of bacteria, both good and bad. While some bacteria are essential for maintaining good oral health, others can cause oral infections and diseases like gum disease and cavities. If left untreated, these oral infections can lead to systemic infections that can affect overall health.
Periodontal Disease and Overall Health
Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is a common oral infection that affects the gums and bone that support the teeth. It is caused by the build-up of plaque and bacteria on the teeth and gums. If left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to tooth loss, bone loss, and systemic infections.
Studies have found a strong link between periodontal disease and overall health. Chronic periodontal disease has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and respiratory infections. The exact mechanism by which periodontal disease affects overall health is not fully understood, but it is believed that the inflammation caused by periodontal disease may contribute to these health problems.
Diabetes and Oral Health
Diabetes is a chronic disease that affects how the body processes glucose, the primary source of energy for the body. People with diabetes are at an increased risk of developing periodontal disease. This is because high blood sugar levels can weaken the immune system, making it harder for the body to fight off infections like gum disease.
In addition, periodontal disease can also make it harder to control blood sugar levels, making diabetes management more difficult. Studies have shown that treating periodontal disease in people with diabetes can improve blood sugar control.
Heart Disease and Oral Health
Several studies have found a link between gum disease and heart disease. While the exact mechanism by which gum disease affects heart health is not fully understood, it is believed that the inflammation caused by gum disease may contribute to the development of heart disease.
Research has shown that people with gum disease are at an increased risk of developing heart disease and that treating gum disease can improve heart health. In one study, treating gum disease was found to reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes by up to 50%.
Respiratory Infections and Oral Health
Oral health can also affect respiratory health. Bacteria from the mouth can be inhaled into the lungs, causing respiratory infections like pneumonia. This is particularly true for people with weakened immune systems or underlying health conditions.
Maintaining Good Oral Health
Maintaining good oral health is essential for overall health and wellbeing. This includes brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and visiting the dentist regularly for cleanings and checkups. Eating a healthy diet that is low in sugar and processed foods can also help maintain good oral health.
If you have any signs of periodontal disease, like bleeding gums or bad breath, it’s important to see a dentist right away. Early intervention can help prevent the progression of gum disease and reduce the risk of systemic infections.
Maintaining good oral health is important not just for a bright smile but for overall health and wellbeing. There is a strong link between oral health and overall health, with periodontal disease being linked to an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and respiratory infections. Maintaining good oral health can help reduce the risk of these systemic infections and improve overall health. If you have any concerns about your oral health, be sure to speak with a dentist who can help you maintain good oral health and identify any potential issues early on. By taking care of your mouth, you can take care of your whole body.