Taking good care of your mouth does more than help to ensure that you have a bright, white smile. Having a healthy mouth and healthy body go hand in hand! Without proper oral hygiene habits, you may begin to develop the early stages of gum disease. Seeing a doctor for gum disease diagnosis and treatment could save your teeth and improve your overall health, as the effects of this condition can be far reaching.
Pancreatic Cancer and Heart Disease
Recent studies have linked good oral hygiene with good overall health. Having a healthy mouth can reduce your risk for many serious diseases, including heart disease and pancreatic cancer. The inflammation that is caused by gingivitis and periodontitis, which are the two main stages of gum disease, has been linked to these conditions. Bacteria that thrive in the mouth can travel to other parts of the body and can cause infection or worsen existing infections in many areas, including the lungs and joints.
Keeping your gums healthy not only helps to prevent gingivitis and periodontal disease, but it can also help improve your memory, according to the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry. In a study done by the journal, adults who had gingivitis performed worse than those who did not on tests of memory and cognitive skills. They were more likely to perform poorly on tests of delayed verbal recall and subtraction, which are two skills we use every day!
Diabetes can make you less able to fight off infection, which includes infections of the gums. Some experts have linked uncontrolled diabetes with gum disease, suggesting that untreated periodontal disease may make it more difficult to control blood sugar levels. Since there seems to be a direct relationship between these two conditions, having a healthy mouth will help you protect your overall health by making it easier to control your diabetes. Seeing a doctor for gum disease treatment is extremely important if you have been diagnosed with both of these conditions.
Preterm Delivery and Low Birth Weight Babies
Some research suggests a link between gingivitis, the early stage of gum disease, and preterm, low birth weight infants. With one in eight babies born prematurely, prevention is the key! Maintaining good oral health may help to prevent premature delivery. See your dentist as part of your prenatal care. He or she will give you good tips and insight into oral health and a healthy pregnancy.
A Healthy Mouth, A Healthy Body in Childhood
It is never too early to start teaching your children to take care of their teeth and gums. Healthy habits learned in childhood can pay off in adulthood. If you are tempted to shrug off your good oral hygiene habits, like brushing, flossing, and seeing your dentist regularly, remember that you are a role model for your kids!
As you can see, the phrase, “healthy mouth, healthy you” really is true and is backed by growing scientific evidence! Schedule your examination with a doctor for gum disease detection and treatment. When diagnosed in the early stages, gum disease is much easier to control and maintain, keeping you on track for your healthy lifestyle!