Everyone knows they should brush their teeth and floss regularly to keep their mouth healthy. But did you know that your oral hygiene can affect your overall health as well? Your mouth is teeming with bacteria, most are harmless, some are even beneficial.
But dangerous bacteria can enter your mouth as well, causing all kinds of health problems. The body’s natural defense mechanisms will usually guard against bad bacteria, being helped by brushing, flossing, and mouthwash.
But poor oral hygiene can lead to overpopulation of the bad bacteria, which leads to more health problems than just gum disease and tooth decay. Today, medical professionals are taking a more holistic approach to dentistry. More research is being done to uncover how dental hygiene affects your entire body.
What Does Bad Bacteria do in Your Mouth?
Harmful bacteria creates dental plaque. Dental plaque is a colorless film that sticks to your teeth. A buildup of dental plaque will form tartar, which is yellow or brown.
Dental plaque and tartar can get into your bloodstream and cause a variety of medical problems. Infections and inflammation in the mouth can lead to trouble in other parts of the body.
Poor dental health has been linked to the following conditions:
* Heart disease
Inflammation in the mouth causes inflammation in blood vessels. In turn, inflammation in blood vessels raises blood pressure, causing the heart to work harder to pump blood.
High blood pressure can lead to an increased risk of heart attack and stroke. Additionally, fatty plaque in the blood vessels can break off and travel to the heart or brain causing a stroke or heart attack.
Inflammation in the mouth weakens the body’s ability to regulate sugar in the blood. Diabetes can occur when your blood sugar level in the blood is too high.
This starts a bad cycle, as high blood sugar can also create an environment in which harmful bacteria thrive, increasing the chance of gum disease and tooth decay.
* Pregnancy complications
Poor dental health has been linked to issues in pregnancies. Infection and inflammation has been found to interfere with fetus development.
Furthermore, hormonal changes during pregnancy can make women more susceptible to gum disease. Practicing good oral hygiene and seeing your dentist for regular cleanings, are important to a healthy pregnancy.
Keep Your Mouth Healthy
Good oral health will prevent gum disease, tooth decay, and bad breath. To keep your mouth healthy you should practice the following: brush and floss daily, use a mouthwash, get regular dental checks, eat a nutritious diet, and most importantly, do not smoke. Smoking is the number one contributor to gum disease and tooth decay.
Visit Your Dentist
An important key to keeping your mouth healthy is regular dental visits. Henderson’s Columbia Dental serves the Henderson and Las Vegas, NV area with stress-free, comprehensive dental services.
Dr. Vi and her staff treat each patient with care and concern. Henderson’s Columbia Dental offers a combination of the latest in technology with a caring and competent staff. Keep your mouth (and your body) healthy, visit them today for your dental needs.