The Connection Between Oral Health and Overall Health

The Connection between Oral Health and Overall Health

At first, it’s easy to presuppose that oral health and overall health are two completely different areas. But when you look carefully, you will see that they are in fact very closely connected. The mouth serves as the main entry point for just about everything the body needs for survival – food, drinks, medication, oxygen, and so on. As such, your oral health does play a huge role in the state of your overall health.

Why Good Oral Health Is Vital for Overall Health

The better you take care of your mouth, the better your overall health will be. As we said earlier, the mouth serves as the main conduit for things that enter the body like food and drinks. If your mouth is in poor health, the bacteria in the area can easily be transported to the other parts of the body each time you swallow. This can pave the way for numerous health conditions, some of which might be very serious.

How Poor Oral Health Affects Overall Health

If you don’t take good care of your teeth and gums, it’s almost certain that bacteria will begin to develop in your mouth. If oral bacteria makes its way to your heart, you can develop endocarditis or an infection of the heart valves. If the bacteria are transported by the bloodstream into your lungs, this can trigger pneumonia and a host of other respiratory problems.

Periodontitis and other kinds of gum diseases can also create other health problems in your body. Studies have already linked gum infections with many cases of clogged arteries and even stroke. Likewise, gum disease has been shown to cause complications in pregnancy and childbirth, like low birth weight and premature deliveries.

It might sound far-fetched that oral health can trigger these serious complications but these cases are backed by solid research.

Oral Indications of Poor Overall Health

Similarly, many internal diseases can also be identified through oral symptoms. A lot of systemic diseases can be detected because of changes in the oral cavity. For example, saliva samples are commonly used to detect internal problems such as high blood sugar and a number of digestive issues.

Changes in the tongue are also strong indicators that something is going on inside the body. If your tongue becomes red and sore for no apparent reason, it’s possible that you are suffering from severe vitamin and mineral deficiencies. In HIV patients, the tongue might become hairy as a result of the Epstein Barr virus.

The appearance of canker sores on the tongue can also be a sign of several systemic diseases such as Crohn’s disease, herpes simplex, ulcerative colitis, reactive arthritis, pemphigus vulgaris and many more.

Importance of Preventative Dental Care

All these diseases might sound scary and some of them can even be life-threatening. But the good news is that many of them can be avoided simply by practising good oral hygiene. This includes brushing and flossing regularly, as well as making sure to go to the dentist twice a year for your preventative dental care treatment.

If you are in Sydney and are looking for a dentist to help keep your oral health in peak condition, call us at Marsfield Dental Care. We offer a range of top-rated dental services for all your oral care needs.

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