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How Does My Oral Health Affect My Overall Health?

There’s no doubt about it: your oral health and your overall health are inextricably linked. Your mouth is a pretty accurate representation of the rest of your body. Oral diseases can cause problems with your overall health, and vice versa. This often comes from the vast amounts of bacteria present in your mouth. In fact, studies suggest that more than 90% of diseases first present themselves in the mouth. It’s up to you to be careful and take care of your dental health. After all, your entire body depends on it!

Here are just a few ailments that suggest a connection between overall health and oral health:

  1. Endocarditis — Endocarditis is an infection of the inner lining of the heart. This can be caused by bacteria from your mouth spreading through your bloodstream and finding their way to your heart.
  2. Cardiovascular disease — Cardiovascular disease is also linked to oral bacteria infections. This includes clogged arteries and stroke.
  3. Periodontitis — Mouth diseases like periodontitis have been linked to premature births and low birthweights, putting newborn babies at risk.
  4. Diabetes — Diabetes reduces the body’s ability to fight infection, which can manifest itself in gum disease.
  5. HIV/AIDS — Oral lesions from this autoimmune disease are often the first sign that a person has it.
  6. Osteoporosis — Osteoporosis, a loss of bone mass, is linked with oral bone loss in addition to regular bone loss. There are bones in your mouth, too!
  7. Alzheimer’s — People with Alzheimer’s disease often experience increasingly worse oral health as the disease progresses.

As you can see from this list, taking care of yourself starts with your dental health.

Here are some easy, common sense steps you can take to keep your mouth healthy:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day after meals.
  • Floss once a day.
  • Make sure to get enough fluoride, either in your tap water or in toothpaste.
  • Limit sugary foods as well as soda and juice.
  • Visit the dentist every six months for your regular cleaning.

To schedule a cleaning today, contact our office by filling out our online form!


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