What Oral Health Does to Overall Health
About 52 percent of the global population suffers from about 291 different oral diseases. According to the FDI World Dental Federation, dental caries, or cavities, account for about 44 percent of these cases, making it the most prevalent oral health problem in the world. Some other conditions that affect many people include gum disease, bad breath (halitosis), dry mouth, oral cancer and more. As if these dental diseases are not enough of a problem to your mouth, teeth and smile on their own, most of them actually pose serious risks to our general health and well-being too!
Below are some of the impacts of oral health on general health and well-being.
Oral Plaque and Heart Disease
A study by the American Heart Association has revealed that oral plaque can possibly find its way into the bloodstream and block arteries that supply blood to the heart. This is serious because it can trigger a stroke or heart attack.
Gum Disease and Diabetes
Gum disease can exacerbate diabetes. This is mainly because the disease reduces the body's ability to absorb insulin medication needed to lower sugar levels in the blood.
Bacteria Buildup and Pneumonia
The buildup of bad bacteria in the mouth can affect the quality of air that flows through the mouth into the lungs. This also poses a serious risk for pneumonia and other respiratory problems.
Periodontitis and Pregnancy
Expectant mothers should ensure proper hygiene before, during and after pregnancy. Gum disease, also known as periodontitis, can increase the risk of premature labor and low birth weight.
Oral Health and HIV
People living with HIV usually have weakened immune systems and should take extra care to avoid infections. Poor dental health can increase the chance of infection in these individuals, which in turn can affect their overall health.
Maintaining great oral health should be a core focus for you and your family in order to maintain proper overall health as well as the health and wellness of your mouth and smile. Neglecting your oral health can have dire consequences. Maintaining proper hygiene and seeing your dentist regularly will help you avoid complicated oral and general health issues.
For more information or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Norman and her team, call us today at 425-320-0742.