4 ways in which your dental health affects your overall health

Ever thought of how your oral health affects your overall health? Tartar on your teeth can cause infections which can have dire consequences for your overall health. Gingivitis will not only cause bleeding of your gums, if it enters your bloodstream and the brain it can cause Alzheimer’s disease. Proper oral health habits are even more important when you have other diseases like diabetes as infections in your mouth can cause further complications.

The Mayo Clinic, as well as a report from ABC News, highlight some major areas of concern:

Cardiovascular disease: In a nutshell, this means heart disease. The bacteria from inflammation of the gums and periodontal disease can enter your bloodstream and travel to the arteries in the heart and cause atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). Atherosclerosis causes plaque to develop on the inner walls of arteries which thicken and this decreases or may block blood flow through the body. This can cause an increased risk of heart attack or stroke. The inner lining of the heart can also become infected and inflamed , a condition known as endocarditis.

Dementia: The bacteria from gingivitis may enter the brain through either nerve channels in the head or through the bloodstream, that might even lead to the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

Respiratory infections: The Journal of Periodontology warns that gum disease could cause you to get infections in your lungs, including pneumonia. While the connection might not be completely obvious at first, think of what might happen from breathing in bacteria from infected teeth and gums over a long period of time.

Diabetic complications: Inflammation of the gum tissue and periodontal disease can make it harder to control your blood sugar and make your diabetes symptoms worse. Diabetes sufferers are also more susceptible to periodontal disease, making proper dental care even more important for those with this disease.

As you can see, brushing and flossing keep more than your pearly whites healthy — they might also prevent serious illnesses. Poor dental care is also a possible factor in other conditions, such as immune system disorders, weak bones, and problems with pregnancy and low birth weight. Poor dental care has also been lined to erectile dysfunctions.

Healthy oral habits are important in order to prevent these and many other diseases. Healthy oral health habits include, brushing your teeth at least twice a day, drinking a lots of water, flossing and visiting your dentist at least once every six months. Start your healthy oral habits today by booking an appointment at Kempton Smile. #KemptonSmile #YourSmile

Dr S Kholvadia is a healthcare practitioner, specialising as a Dentist, in Kempton Park. Kempton Smile is a family and cosmetic dental practice operating from Kempton Square next to Pick ‘n Pay, at Kempton Park.

(Source: http://www.colgate.com)

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