Your mouth is a funny place. Your body is fairly easy to keep clean and healthy when compared to your mouth. As long as you shower daily, eat right and get some exercise, generally speaking your body is going to treat you fairly well. Your mouth is another story. Your mouth is a place that is warm and wet, and that makes it a great place for germs and bacteria to thrive. It’s also filled with tiny little nooks and crannies that create perfect places for oral problems to begin. And finally, it acts as the gateway to your insides.
That’s why taking good care of your mouth requires some work on your part – just as your Southern Ocean County dental office tells you!
And make no mistake, it’s a relatively small effort that you’ll want to make, because your oral health is closely tied to your overall health. Here’s how:
Periodontal Disease – Some recent studies now prove there are links between periodontal disease and other oral afflictions, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s. dentists have found that they can often diagnose those conditions early in part by your oral health.
Good Digestion – Your every bodily function begins and ends with your body’s ability to turn food into energy, and that entire process begins in your mouth.
Heart Disease – It might seem to be counterintuitive that these two things would be linked, but a study from 2008 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine suggested that periodontal disease was a risk factor for heart disease. A few follow-up studies also appear to show that treating periodontal disease can also lower’s a person’s risk for heart disease.
Diabetes – Diabetes shows itself in a number of ways, among them in gum inflammation. This is something your dentist might notice, allowing you to spot early warning signs of the disease.
Preterm Labor – This is another that may surprise you. We now know that pregnancy increases the risk of gum disease and other oral maladies, and further, gum disease increases the risk of low birth weight and preterm labor. So these things are linked!
Pneumonia – Earlier when we said your mouth was a good place for bacteria and germs to gather, we weren’t kidding. Under some conditions, breathing in germs may put you at an increased risk of developing pneumonia thanks to those factors. That’s a good reason to have good oral hygiene!
Osteoporosis – Current studies are still looking into this, but a few researchers believe that suffering from both osteoporosis and periodontal disease could lead to faster bone loss. That’s not really a risk you want to take then, is it?
Arthritis – This link still being studied, but it’s worth noting. A study published in the Journal of Periodontology is one of several trying to establish a connection between these two inflammatory disorders.
With all of the above in mind, it appears that a good idea is to follow the advice of your dentist in Ocean County when they tell you to do better at care of your mouth. Wouldn’t you agree?
By now you know what to do: Brush at least twice daily, ever day! Floss daily. Be sure to use mouthwash. Go for regular checkups with your dentist. Avoid food and drinks high in sugar. And so on.
Why? Because these things may seem minor, so small that sometimes you can’t be bothered to follow through, but they can play a role in protecting a much bigger, interconnected system – you body.