Did you know that your oral health offers clues about your overall health — or that problems in your mouth can affect the rest of your body?
The mouth is a window into the health of the body. It can show signs of nutritional deficiencies or general infection. Given the potential link between periodontitis (gum disease) and systemic health problems, prevention is an important step in maintaining overall health. Professional cleanings are the only way to remove calculus (tartar), which traps plaque bacteria along the gum line. Schedule regular dental checkups for you and your family.
*What conditions can be linked to oral health?
Your oral health might contribute to various diseases and conditions, including:
• 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.
• Diabetes. By reducing the body’s resistance to infection, diabetes puts your gums at risk. Gum disease appears to be more frequent and severe among people who have diabetes.
Research shows that people who have gum disease have a harder time controlling their blood sugar levels. Regular periodontal care can improve diabetes control.
*information from mayoclinic.org