Did you know if your teeth and gums are unhealthy, it can effect your overall health? That’s right! Think about it for a minute, everything in your body is interconnected. It’s important to find balance to keep your entire body working properly. Your overall health is connected to everything from your mouth and teeth to your gut and skin. Let’s talk about 10 diseases caused by poor oral hygiene and how you can avoid them.
Visiting your dentist twice a year for regular cleanings is a great start when it comes to good oral health. But there are many other things you can do to keep your mouth healthy, which in turn will keep you healthy. Many dentists will encourage healthy brushing habits, flossing, oil pulling and a healthy diet. Dentists may also consider working with a dental consultant to share important info with patients and the general public, which can be super helpful.
For patients, understanding these diseases and how to prevent them is the first step in keeping good oral health. Brush, floss, and schedule your visits, or you could fall prey to one of these ten diseases.
10 Diseases Caused by Poor Oral Hygiene
- Gum Disease
Obviously poor oral hygiene puts you at risk for gum disease. A buildup of plaque underneath the gums can lead to bone loss and eventually tooth loss.
- Heart Disease
Gum disease can make you twice as likely to have heart problems. This is because bacteria and plaque start entering the bloodstream, which can start clogging arteries. In worst case scenarios, this can also increase your risk for strokes.
- Cognitive Disease
Early stage Alzheimer’s and Dementia have also been linked to poor oral health. Research into the connection has shown that gum infection can lead to the release of substances that can inflame the brain, which kills off brain cells.
- Respiratory Disease
When bacteria and plaque enter your bloodstream, they can also move to the lungs, which can leave you at greater risk for respiratory problems like bronchitis and pneumonia.
The connection between diabetes and gum disease is very high – nearly 95% of adults with diabetes also have periodontal problems. In part, diabetes makes the body at greater risk for infection, so without proper care there is a greater risk of diabetic patients having gum disease. Plus, gum disease affects insulin levels which can aggregate diabetic conditions.
- Erectile Dysfunction
When there is a buildup of plaque and bacteria in your blood, blood flow is constricted throughout the body. This includes the genitals, which is why mean with gum disease are seven times more likely to have ED.
Having poor health can impact a woman’s ability to get pregnant. Doctors have been studying the connection between gum disease and the longer period of time it will take for afflicted women to get pregnant – nearly two months longer than those without oral health problems.
Besides mouth cancer, gum disease can put you at greater risk for cancer in the kidneys, blood, and pancreas. Plus, habits like smoking can also contribute to gum disease and to cancers in other parts of the body.
- Premature Birth
Babies are typically born prematurely due to and with a number of medical conditions. New research has shown that when a mother has gum disease, the infection is more likely to trigger an early birth.
One of the key concerns about gum disease is that it contributes to bone loss. A focus for researchers now is looking at how inflammation from gum disease may trigger bone loss elsewhere in the body.
Keep Your Mouth Healthy
Keeping your mouth healthy is really simple. Choose a good, high quality toothpaste without tons of synthetic ingredients. Use baking soda to buff and polish the teeth. Floss regularly and eat a healthy diet. You can also try oil pulling with organic coconut oil and a few drops of essential oil to keep your mouth clean and your body healthy.
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