The Connection between Oral Health and Overall Health

Today’s generation is more aware of the importance of keeping their bodies healthy than ever before. We go to the gym, we try to eat right, we try to live a balanced lifestyle, eliminate stress, etc. Whether it’s the age of social media that has dominated for the last few years or just the overall culture that has been created, we strive to look and feel our best at all times. Maybe it’s because we fear what others will think if we don’t, or maybe because we need validation from others that what we are doing is “cool”, we are trying to mold ourselves into the healthiest people we can be. The best part is, it’s a really good thing! However, the part a lot of people don’t understand is the correlation between a healthy mouth and a healthy body. Achieving a healthy body is impossible without a solid oral care routine. Your experienced Sunnyvale dentist presents you some connections between oral health and overall health…

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Oral health and Diabetes:

People who have diabetes know that the disease can cause harm to the eyes, nerves, heart, and other important systems in the body but many do not know that diabetes can also cause problems in your mouth. People with diabetes are at special risk of periodontal (gum) disease, an infection of the gum and bone that hold your teeth in place. Gum disease can result in painful chewing and even loss of teeth. Dry mouth, often a symptom of undiagnosed diabetes can cause soreness, ulcers, infections, and tooth decay. In order to reduce the effects of diabetes on your mouth, controlling your blood glucose is key. People with poor blood glucose control are more susceptible to gum disease than those who control it. Daily brushing, flossing, and regular dental visits are the best defense against oral complications of diabetes.

Oral Health and Heart Disease:

The link between heart disease and oral health is being studied increasingly. There are two different connections between heart disease and oral health. First, studies have shown that people with moderate or advanced gum disease are more likely to have heart disease than those with healthy gums. Second, studies have shown that oral health can provide warning signals for other disease or conditions including heart disease.

Oral Health and Pregnancy:

Studies have shown that pregnant women with poor oral health are at a higher risk of delivering pre-term, low birth weight babies than women with good oral health. Babies who are pre-term or low birth weight have a higher risk of developmental complications such as asthma, ear infections, birth abnormalities, and are at a higher risk of infant death. To protect the future of your baby, keep your mouth healthy.

Next time you’re planning out your day and are making time for the gym and healthy eating, carve out some time to establish a healthy oral care routine. If you are unsure of whether your oral care routine is good enough, consult your dentist for recommendations. Also, don’t forget to go in for regular cleanings and checkups to optimize your oral health!

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