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How Oral Hygiene Affects Your Overall Health

By on November 30, 2015

How Oral Hygiene Affects Your Overall Health

Today, the relationship between oral health and impact on the body, not only is in dispute, but numerous studies have already shown their close relationship.

What is manifested in the mouth can affect the rest of the body and what happens in the rest of the body can take effect in the mouth. In other words, oral health is important and is related to general health and wellness.

The mouth is the window to the body’s health

In the mouth several bacteria, including those related to dental caries, periodontal diseases and systemic diseases that affect overall health are present. These bacteria are usually kept under control with good oral hygiene such as brushing and flossing daily. When harmful bacteria grow out of control, they can cause gum infections and thus become the oral cavity at a port of entry into the bloodstream.

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The mouth reflects signs and symptoms of health and disease, including some diseases that affect the body as a whole that may have their first manifestation in oral cavity. In the mouth we can also see some injuries that may alert us to vitamin deficiencies, lack of some minerals or deficient nutritional states.

One of the conclusions of this reality is the importance of enhancing the medical training of dentists, learning to recognize different lesions and oral manifestations of systemic diseases and the need for the various health sectors working together in future projects.

The Connection between periodontitis and other diseases

A classic example of the impact of oral health on overall health is periodontal disease. Health professionals insist that periodontal disease, in addition to causing tooth loss, can also increase the risk of premature birth and giving birth to babies with low birth weight and cardiovascular disease or diabetes.

Meanwhile, patients with periodontal disease may have type 2 diabetes more frequently than those with healthy gums. Periodontal disease may also contribute to increased risk of complications associated with diabetes. Diabetics may be at risk of cardiorenal mortality three times more than diabetics without periodontitis. In diabetics with periodontitis, the incidence of microalbuminuria is twice as high, and the incidence of end stage renal disease is five times higher than in diabetics with healthy gums. Moreover, gastrointestinal and respiratory diseases also have oral impact.


Health risks work both ways

Infection in the mouth can increase levels of blood sugar and make diabetes harder to control. Also, it has been found that adults with poorly controlled diabetes have a three times higher chance of having periodontal disease than those without diabetes risk. Less frequently, diabetes may also cause other oral problems such as oral thrush, dry mouth, burning mouth, enlarged salivary glands, post-extraction infections and/or alterations in taste perception.


Oral hygiene is a must

Another fact that is well documented is that the mouth can be a direct deposit to bacterial contamination of the lungs, from microorganisms of the respiratory system, developing bacterial pneumonia. In addition, people with a weakened immunity due to different reasons are more likely to acquire fungal and viral infections in the mouth and, therefore, some blood disorders.

You have to be especially careful if you are wearing braces because the accumulation of bacteria is far greater with braces and oral hygiene has to be even stricter. If you need teeth correction, think about Invisalign, since in the Invisalign vs braces battle, Invisalign would always win due to its nicer appearance and less room for bacteria development.


Think before you act

There has been a great impact on oral health because some of the drugs taken regularly for systemic diseases such as hypertension or insomnia cause dry mouth. This decrease in salivary flow generates different oral problems arising from the lack of protection that the saliva creates in the oral cavity.

Among others, the main problems arising from the decrease in saliva are increased risk of dental caries, oral infections caused by opportunistic agents such as candida and other oral infections. Also, lack of vitamins can have serious effects on the mouth and teeth, and snuff consumption and poor eating habits can also affect the orofacial area and the facial skin.

Good health can start with the mouth. However, parents, health professionals and service providers often overlook this relationship with general health. It is essential to be aware of the importance of clean teeth and explain this to children as soon as possible, so that they could grow up to be healthy people with a perfect smile.

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Diana Smith

Diana Smith

Diana Smith is a full time mom of two beautiful girls interested in topics related to health and alternative medicine. In her free time she enjoys preparing healthy meals for her family
Diana Smith

Latest posts by Diana Smith (see all)

Diana Smith

About Diana Smith

Diana Smith is a full time mom of two beautiful girls interested in topics related to health and alternative medicine. In her free time she enjoys preparing healthy meals for her family

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