Oral hygiene does way more for your overall health than just keeping your teeth clean; it can impact your entire body and indicate a variety of health conditions you may not know you had.
Talking to your dentist about oral hygiene can help you figure out the best way to take care of your teeth. In the meantime, you can learn three reasons why oral health affects your overall wellness below.
1. Oral Health Prevents Avoidable Health Concerns
Gum disease is one of the most common chronic inflammatory conditions globally, yet it can be easily overlooked. Continued inflammation of the mouth increases the number of bacteria that can enter the body, leading to inflammation in other parts of the body.
Maintaining healthy oral habits prevents the spread of disease and other health concerns, like the following:
- Gum Disease. Skip your daily oral health regimen, and you could see what begins as inflammation of the gums. From there, gingivitis turns into serious gum disease, causing swollenness, chills and fever, and even a runny nose.
- Pneumonia. The chances of getting pneumonia are also increased – bacteria in the mouth can be pulled into the lungs, causing an infection.
- Heart Attack. Once bacteria have entered the bloodstream, they can travel to the heart.
Brushing and flossing prevent bacteria buildup, saving you from concerns about your long-term health. It only takes a minimum of four minutes a day to keep your mouth healthy.
2. Periodontitis Brings Risks to Pregnant Mothers
Pregnant women are at an increased risk of conditions like periodontitis, which is a form of severe gum disease that can lead to an infection of the jaw and gums. This can cause pregnant women to lose their teeth and increase the risk of pre-term birth or a low birth weight.
Hormonal changes in the body during pregnancy are suspected to be the reason for the increased risk of periodontitis. Periodontitis cannot be reversed or cured, but it can be treated to control the infection.
Dental health procedures are generally considered safe. However, some procedures to maintain the disease are not recommended for pregnant women. This is why daily brushing and flossing are highly encouraged to prevent the risk of harm to the mother and child.
3. Worsened Current Health Conditions
People with certain health conditions are at a higher risk of developing the following illnesses simply because they neglect a daily oral health routine, such as:
- Alzheimer’s disease
These are a few of the conditions linked to poorer oral hygiene. Some eating disorders, types of cancer, and immune disorders can also impact the level of oral health possible.
Once a person has one of these illnesses, maintaining oral hygiene through brushing and flossing can become more difficult. However, it’s still possible help keep teeth healthy in the following ways:
- Maintaining a healthy diet. Limiting the number of sugary drinks and foods alone curbs a significant amount of enamel that is dissolved or develops cavities.
- Regularly visiting the dentist. A professional is the best person to treat a person suffering with a disease that complicates oral health.
- Avoiding tobacco. Avoiding tobacco will prevent your gums from getting irritated and receding.
Brushing and flossing are the best ways to prevent diseases and avoid exacerbating the chance of developing health problems in the future. We also recommend regular dentist visits to get a professional opinion. They can suggest the best strategies for keeping your teeth clean or procedures that can improve your condition if you show signs of gum disease.
It’s never too late to improve oral hygiene. Follow the suggestions of your dentist to keep your overall health in check.