When it comes to your general health, your mouth plays an important role. The teeth and gums are necessary for chewing nutritious foods, and your tongue allows you to taste what you eat. But the connection goes much deeper. Dental exams, routine cleanings, and good hygiene at home not only contribute to oral health but also your overall health.
How Does Dental Care Improve My Health?
Poor dental hygiene allows bacteria to multiply in your mouth, especially between the teeth and in the gums. This may lead to periodontal disease, cavities, and other problems. Left untreated, these conditions cause tooth and bone loss.
Poor oral healthcare has also been linked to medical conditions elsewhere in the body.
- Endocarditis: Inflammation of the heart lining occurs when bacteria travels through the blood stream to your heart. The bacteria can from any part of your body, including your mouth.
- Premature birth and low birth weight: Pregnant women should be especially diligent about oral health. Periodontal disease has been linked to premature birth and low birth rate.
- Conditions affecting the cardiovascular system: Although the research into the link between cardiovascular conditions and oral health is limited, initial studies have demonstrated that poor oral hygiene may increase your risk for stroke, clogged arteries, and heart disease.
Medical Conditions that Affect Oral Health
Just as oral health may increase your risk for some medical conditions, the opposite is true as well. Some medical conditions increase your risk of developing dental problems, such as:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Eating and nutritional disorders
- HIV/AIDS and other conditions that affect the immune system
- Certain types of cancer
- Rheumatoid arthritis
Managing Your Oral Health
An initial dental exam is a great start to improving your oral health. We recommend treatments that will address any dental problems and reduce the chances of developing health complications associated with poor oral hygiene.
Learn More About Dental Care and Your Health. Contact Centennial Dental Care.
To learn more about dental exams, teeth whitening, dental implants and our other services, contact Centennial Dental Care. If you prefer, you can contact our office in Boise directly at (208) 322-1112.