Oral health is a window to general health as it gives a clue of what is going on with the rest of the body. The mouth hosts a lot of bacteria that are not harmful. Good oral hygiene like brushing, flossing, and reducing sugar intake keep the number of these bacteria under control.
However, when oral care is neglected, the bacteria can become harmful or grow excess and cause oral health problems like tooth decay and gum disease.
Since the bacteria living in the mouth have access to the bloodstream, digestive and respiratory tract, they can go there and beyond to cause extensive damage. A quick visit to a dentist Campsie can stop the progression of the disease before it gets out of hand.
General Health Concerns Associated with Oral Health
Oral health is a pointer to the soundness of overall health; the following health issues are connected with oral health.
● Respiratory Infection
People with poor gum health have a high risk of having respiratory diseases in their lifetime. There is a link between periodontal diseases and respiratory infections like pneumonia, bronchitis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease ( COPD). This occurs when the harmful bacteria from the gum makes it to the bloodstream or gets into the lung through breathing.
● Cardiovascular Diseases
Research shows that over 90 percent of people with heart problems suffer from oral infection. When gum inflammation occurs in the mouth, the underlying arteries become thick due to plaque buildup. This leads to decreased blood flow and might lead to stroke or heart failure if not quickly treated.
Diabetic Individuals are susceptible to various infections, including periodontal diseases. Gum diseases drive up the level of blood sugar, which makes it hard to manage diabetes. Poor oral health care also increases one’s chance of having diabetes.
● Pregnancy Complications
The hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy make pregnant women vulnerable to oral infections. However, this risk is higher in women with existing oral illnesses. Periodontitis and gingivitis have been linked to premature birth and low birth weight.
● Degenerative Diseases
Gingivitis and periodontal diseases are associated with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Bacteria from the mouth can spread through the nerve channel to the brain region and damage brain cells, and cause memory loss.
● Kidney Disease
Gum disease lowers the body’s ability to fight infections compromising the immune system. The available data shows the correlation between kidney disease and gum disease—the more inflamed the gum disease, the worse the kidney function.
Other Disease Includes
- Chronic headache
- Erectile dysfunction
How to Protect Your General Health Through Oral Health
Good oral hygiene is a lifelong practice to protect your oral and general health. The following are the best oral hygiene practices
- Brush your teeth not less than twice daily using fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush.
- Floss at least once daily.
- Gargle with mouthwash to remove food residue missed by brush and floss.
- Reduce sugary foods and drinks
- Shun tobacco products use.
- Visit the dentist at least twice a year.
- Change your toothbrush every three to four months.