Studies across the dental industry have established that the mouth is a window to the overall health of the body. And evidence suggests that malnutrition and general infections can be detected through oral indicators, including declines in brain health. Additionally, lesions in the mouth and other oral issues can indicate the presence of bodily disease, and bacteria in the mouth can lead to difficult periodontal disease and tooth decay.
Research has demonstrated that periodontitis, an advanced form of mouth disease, is associated with other health problems, such as cardiovascular disease, stroke, and bacterial pneumonia. That means no matter what physical problems you face, keeping your mouth healthy is one major element of full-body fitness – the two go hand-in-hand. Here are three ways your mouth is the window to your overall health.
Oral Health And General Health Are Linked
Numerous studies have established a strong link between poor oral health and various long-term and full-body health conditions. Many have found individuals with poor oral hygiene are at a greater risk of developing heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
One significant example of this link is gum disease, which has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease and stroke. Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the gums and the surrounding tissues that support the teeth. When left untreated, the bacteria that cause gum disease can penetrate the bloodstream and travel to other parts of the body, leading to systemic inflammation and other health problems.
Inflammation In The Mouth Can Indicate Systemic Inflammation
Speaking of inflammation, when it’s detected in the body it can a marker of numerous health conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease. It can manifest in various ways, and inflammation in the mouth is no exception. Redness and swelling of the gums are indicative of issues that can, in turn, signal the presence of systemic inflammation in other parts of the body.
Routine dental check-ups are essential for overall oral health. They can help detect early signs of inflammation in the mouth and allow for early intervention to prevent the development of more severe health conditions. Taking care of oral health through regular brushing, flossing, and the use of antibacterial mouthwash can help reduce the risk of inflammation in the mouth and, by extension, systemic inflammation in the rest of the body
Oral Cancer Can Be Detected Through Regular Dental Check-Ups
Attending regular dental check-ups is the best way to potentially catch oral cancer early, which increases the chances of successful treatment. As part of the check-up, dental professionals examine your mouth for signs of oral cancer such as white or red patches, sores that fail to heal, or lumps in the neck. While it’s impossible to prevent cancer entirely, people with a high risk of oral cancer benefit significantly from oral cancer screenings, though studies haven’t clearly shown at what rate they are catching oral cancers.
Additionally, avoiding these habits can help prevent oral cancer:
- Tobacco use of any kind, including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco, and snuff
- Heavy alcohol drinking
- Any previous oral cancer diagnosis
- History of significant sun exposure, increasing the risk of lip cancer
When to See a Periodontist About Your Oral Health
If you notice any signs of gum disease or other oral health problems, it is important to see an expert like the professionals at Elkhart Periodontics as soon as possible. Signs of gum disease can include red, swollen or bleeding gums, loose teeth, persistent bad breath, and receding gumlines. These symptoms can indicate the presence of a serious oral health problem that requires immediate attention from a qualified specialist like our team. Early intervention is crucial in preventing the progression of gum disease and associated long-term health problems. It is critical to seek professional dental care from a periodontist as soon as possible to maintain good oral health and prevent more severe health conditions.
Contact Elkhart Periodontics Today!
For comprehensive dental implant services, look no further than Elkhart Periodontics and Dental Implants, the top provider in Indiana. Our team of dental implant specialists offers a full range of services to meet all of your dental needs. If you require specialized periodontal care, don’t hesitate to call our experts at (574) 266-6107 to schedule your appointment and receive the exceptional treatment you deserve today.