How Your Dental Health Affects Your Overall Health

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woman with toothbrush - How Your Dental Health Affects Your Overall Health

How Your Dental Health Affects Your Overall Health

Good oral hygiene keeps your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy, but it also plays a role in how your dental health affects your overall health.

Keeping your mouth healthy with regular brushing, flossing, and visits to the dentist for professional cleaning, can keep the bacteria in your mouth under control and prevent cavities and gum disease.

But that’s not all.

The Mayo Clinic says oral bacteria may contribute to the following diseases and conditions outside of the mouth as well:

  • Endocarditis. This infection of the inner lining of your heart chambers or valves (endocardium) typically occurs when bacteria or other germs from another part of your body, such as your mouth, spread through your bloodstream and attach to certain areas in your heart.
  • Cardiovascular disease. Although the connection is not fully understood, some research suggests that heart disease, clogged arteries and stroke might be linked to the inflammation and infections that oral bacteria can cause.
  • Pregnancy and birth complications. Periodontitis has been linked to premature birth and low birth weight.
  • Pneumonia. Certain bacteria in your mouth can be pulled into your lungs, causing pneumonia and other respiratory diseases.
The American Dental Association cautions that “Although periodontitis (advanced gum disease) may contribute to these health conditions, it’s important to understand that just because two conditions occur at the same time, it doesn’t necessarily mean that one condition causes the other.”

However, given the potential link between oral bacteria and these health issues, maintaining good dental health may be an important step in maintaining good overall health.

So, how do you maintain good dental health?

General best practices are:

  1. Brush your teeth twice a day.
  2. Floss to clean between teeth once a day.
  3. Use microbial mouth rinse if directed by your dentist.
  4. Schedule regular dental checkups and professional cleanings.
Be sure to check with your dentist for personal recommendations specific to your personal oral health and dental conditions.

Is it time for you to see us? Contact us today to schedule your appointment with Dr. Lovik Mirzaeian.