Your oral care habits do effect more than your smile. There has been scientific studies conducted which demonstrate a link between a healthy body and oral care. Aside from the risks of tooth decay, cavities, and gum disease, poor oral care habits can contribute to other types of illnesses and diseases.
How Oral Care Affects Our Health
The bacteria found in the mouth that create plaque and tartar, as well as tooth decaying acids can increase risks for other types of medical conditions if the teeth are not brushed, flossed and cleaned by a dentist at least twice a year. Some of these medical conditions include:
- Arthritis: People who have developed gum disease have a higher likelihood of developing arthritis, since the bacteria can enter the blood stream and move to other areas of the body. The bacteria that causes gum disease causes inflammation, a common symptom of arthritis.
- Lung Conditions: The bacteria can cause respiratory infections and further aggravate existing conditions, such as COPD, asthma, and respiratory allergies.
- Heart Disease: As the bacteria from the mouth moves into the blood stream, it will eventually pass through the heart. This can increases the risks for heart disease and endocarditis, another heart-related condition.
- Narrowing of the Arteries: The bacteria can cause the arteries to narrow, a condition called atherosclerosis. This can increase risks for heart attack and stroke, especially if the person also has high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
How Our Health Affects Oral Care
Certain medical conditions can be linked to affecting our oral health. For instance, if you get pregnant, the hormonal changes your body goes through during pregnancy can increase risks of gum disease. Diabetes is another medical condition that can affect oral health and increase risks for gum disease.
Signs of Poor Oral Care Habits
There are several indications you have poor oral care habits. These signs are indications that your overall health could also be put at risk and include:
- Receding Gums
- Bleeding Gum
- Swollen or Sore Gums
- Bad Breath
- Tooth Aches
- Infections in the Mouth
- Jawbone Density Loss
- Tooth Sensitivity along the Gum Line
How to Improve Your Oral Care Habits
Overcoming poor oral care habits does require making a commitment to change. Your new oral care habits should include the following:
- Do floss at least once a day.
- Do brush your teeth for two minutes at least twice a day.
- Do use a fluoride toothpaste.
- Do visit your dentist for regular cleanings and checkups at least twice a year.
- Don’t use tobacco products or smoke.
- Don’t use vaping products as these dry out the gum tissue.
- Do avoid sugary sodas and snacks.
- Do drink plenty of water throughout the day.
By making these changes, not only is your mouth heathier, but also your entire body!
If you have further questions about proper oral care and how to achieve a healthy and happy smile, please feel free to contact Oasis Family Dental at (807) 623-2662 today!