Cleaning Towards Total Health: The Oral/Body Connection
Getting your teeth cleaned affects your health in unexpected ways. Though most people find it a mundane routine, research proves that your dental diligence is a measure of your total health. Prevention for heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, and low birth rate go up with oral condition—in other words, risk for disease goes down significantly if you take care of your teeth. It seems so simple, and it is. Realizing beyond the mundane task of sitting in the dental chair, having your gums poked at, teeth scraped, and cavities filled, there is an overall investment you make in your longevity. Here are the major threats to health, and the most serious of adult maladies, if neglecting oral prevention:
• Periodontal disease leads to heart problems. According to studies, the risk is double for stroke if you have gum problems. How can this be related? Of the over 300 different types of bacteria that live and breed in your mouth, the few harmful ones, if untended, make their way into your bloodstream, assisting in the clogging of arteries and inflammation. Removing this invisible harmful bacteria through regular visits to our office alleviates this danger.
• Diabetes patients suffer from an increased prevalence of gum disease, since they are more susceptible for the bacterial infection that invades gums. Oral health become a barometer for how to cope with the challenge of this disease. It is the first indication of how you are maintaining your condition.
• Medications have side effects that affect your gums and teeth. Many reduce saliva production which is the major way your body defends against harmful bacteria. Handling any problems that arise at the oral level will help your body’s natural defenses fight off other pathogens, which is why you are taking medications in the first place. Monitoring the condition of teeth and gums will also indicate the level of medication necessary, easing your body’s ability to respond positively.
• Osteoporosis can cause bone decay and tooth loss. How teeth and gums age contributes back to the acceleration of this condition. Preventative measures can slow the advance of the disease. If you are at risk for this condition, establish a base line for measurement.
• Alzheimer’s disease can be predicted by an increased risk factor of tooth loss before the age of 35. Studies are beginning to discover a greater and greater link between oral hygiene and mental aging.
Simple habits make a significant difference in these threats. As you may struggle to improve your life in difficult ways (such as losing weight, lowering cholesterol, strengthening muscles, back pain issues), oral health is one area where a small amount of effort has a huge impact. Healthy teeth, gums, and supporting bone are within your grasp by simply brushing and flossing correctly and, of course, visiting our dental office to regularly remove the harmful bacteria that has built up since your last visit. You may be saving more than your teeth!Your overall health, and the quality of your life, will benefit from it!
Conveniently located in Evanston, our office hours are flexible to your schedule. We make it as easy as possible for you to do your dental diligence.