Many factors play into sustaining a healthy, balanced lifestyle. The big ones are easy to remember: take your vitamins, get enough sleep, drink lots of water, exercise often.
While all of these components are essential in promoting and maintaining good health long-term, there are other aspects of preventative care that are not always considered. We all know taking good care of your teeth prevents cavities and gum disease, but did you know that poor dental health and inadequate hygiene practices can negatively affect your whole body? In this article, we go over some of the ways dental health plays a role in overall well-being.
While folks often don’t equate dental health with overall health, what’s happening inside of your mouth can affect organs as integral as your heart.
Periodontal disease, commonly called gum disease, can become much more dangerous to the whole body when left untreated. The same bacteria that builds up and causes plaque in the mouth can get into the bloodstream and wreak havoc in the body’s arteries. If left undiscovered and untreated, the plaque can harden. This leads to reduced blood flow and increases the probability of a heart attack.
You may not want to cough up the high fee for dentist-recommended fillings, or necessary dental implants cost in Toronto and other major cities. However, protecting your heart health is well worth the financial investment. Taking care of your teeth now could really be the difference between life and death in the future.
As any good ENT (ears, nose, throat) specialist would tell you, there are lots of connected systems that center around the mouth. When there is a buildup of dangerous bacteria in the mouth, it is highly probable for that bacteria to trickle down the throat and invade the lungs.
Just breathing through your mouth can encourage bacteria to travel throughout your body. This can potentially cause respiratory infection, pneumonia, COPD, and acute bronchitis. Don’t take this risk and seek medical help if you think you may have inflamed gums.
Fertility and Sexual Health
There are some surprising ways that oral hygiene can affect sexual health and even fertility. This is true for both men and women.
Men who develop gum disease are more likely to suffer from a condition known as prostatitis. Prostatitis can lead to pain and difficulty with ejaculation, urgency with urination, and more. Additionally, chronic periodontal disease can lead to bacteria being flushed into the bloodstream. When inflammation from bacteria occurs, it can cause erectile dysfunction.
For female reproductive health, poor oral hygiene can causes issues with fertility. Gum disease can lead to so many problems with general health that it can become incredibly challenging for a person to become pregnant or carry a pregnancy to term.
Not only can physical health and well being be seriously threatened by poor oral hygiene, but mental stability may also be in danger. There are substances from inflamed and infected gums that, when they reach the brain through the bloodstream, can damage and even kill brain cells. This can lead to severe memory loss and issues with basic yet essential cognitive functions.
More specifically, gingivitis can potentially lead to dementia and even advance to Alzheimer’s disease if no intervention is sought out.
The List Goes on and on
Within the medical community, there is evidence suggesting that gum disease is far more dangerous than many people assume. In addition to the deadly conditions we’ve discussed, periodontal disease has been linked to kidney disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis, and even cancer. If dangerous bacteria enter the bloodstream, it can do harm to almost every area of the body. Inflammation from infection can cause severe discomfort and pain, making it a struggle to get through the daily routines of life.
Luckily, periodontal disease can easily be prevented with good oral hygiene habits. If you floss and brush your teeth regularly and routinely visit the dentist for preventative care twice a year, you can avoid all these dangers. Invest the small amount of time in your oral health now. Down the line, you’ll be glad you did.