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Importance of Good Oral Hygiene for Overall Health

The human body is comprised of complex organs which are interconnected with each other. A healthy mouth may help you ward off medical disorders. The flip side? An unhealthy mouth, especially if you have gum disease, may increase your risk of serious health problems such as heart attack, stroke, etc. In case, if you have symptoms of severe oral problems, visit your local dentist for emergency dental care to know more about your oral health. To prevent any health issues, practicing good oral hygiene and visiting a dentist regularly is very important.  Here’s how oral health can impact the overall health of the body.

The Mouth as a Gateway

Your mouth is the gateway to your body’s health. Bacteria that builds up on teeth make gums prone to infection. The antibodies from the immune system try to fight the infection, inflaming the gums. The inflammation continues unless the infection is brought under control.

Over time, inflammation and the chemical it releases affects the gum tissue and the bone structure that hold teeth in place. The result is severe gum disease, known as periodontitis. Inflammation can also cause problems like diabetes, heart disease, stroke, etc.

Oral Health and Diabetes

Periodontal disease may also make it hard for diabetics to control their blood sugar levels. If left untreated, periodontal diseases can lead to tooth loss. Also, diabetes can lead to changes in the oral cavity, and uncontrolled diabetes can contribute to uncontrolled gum disease. Hence, good oral hygiene is important to avoid bacteria and plaque build-up, improving the overall health of the body. For diabetics, having a dry mouth is a common oral problem caused due to consuming antibiotics. Therefore, use a mouthwash to maintain the right ph level in your mouth and brush after each meal to avoid plaque build-up.

Oral Health and Heart Diseases

Periodontitis is directly linked to raising the risk factors for heart disease. The inflammation in the mouth causes inflammation in the blood vessels. Oral health and heart disease are linked by the spread of bacteria from the mouth to various parts of the body through the bloodstream. These bacteria enter the heart through blood and can damage the heart tissue causing inflammation in the inner lining of the heart. This inflammation results in cardiovascular conditions such as atherosclerosis and stroke. Good oral hygiene like flossing daily, replacing your toothbrush every 3 months, and scheduling regular dental examinations are the best way to protect yourself against the development of gum disease.

Oral Health and Lung Diseases

Bad oral health with periodontitis infection can worsen chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Bacterial chest infections are caused by breathing in bacteria and salivary droplets from the throat and mouth into the lungs. This causes an infection, known as pneumonia that could worsen an existing breathing condition. Hence, flossing your teeth can prevent plaque and germ build-up. Also, using mouthwash twice a day kills germs and helps in maintaining good oral hygiene.

Oral Health and Other Health Risks

Pregnant women are at a high risk of periodontal disease as pregnancy leads to hormonal changes in the body. Following a consistent oral health care routine is, therefore, important for pregnant women.

A smoker is at three times higher risk of suffering from severe gum disease than someone who does not smoke. Nicotine from cigarettes causes blood vessels to constrict, interfering with the ability for gums to fight infection. Hence, avoid smoking to maintain good oral hygiene and better overall health of the body.

Taking good care of your teeth and gums can considerably reduce infections of other diseases. Surely brushing and flossing daily, using a mouthwash, and following other oral habits are necessary. But, one should also schedule regular dental visits for regular checkups to keep track of your oral health and hygiene. If you have pain or show signs of the above-mentioned oral problems, visit your dentist immediately for emergency dental care before they cause health complications in the future.