How are Oral Health and General Health Closely Connected?

If your eyes are the window to your soul, then your mouth is a reflection of your general health. Many health experts agree to the fact that good oral health care & hygiene does more than prevent tooth decay and gum disease. As is rightly said, any disease related to the mouth has an impact elsewhere in the body.




Read on to understand how exactly is your oral health and general health closely connected.


  1. Your mouth is the gateway to your body

Bacteria that builds up on teeth makes gums prone to infection. The immune system moves in to attack the infection, and the gums become inflamed.

Unless the infection is brought under control by getting it treated by a dentist, the inflammation continues. Over time, inflammation and the chemicals it releases eat away the bone structure and gums that hold the teeth in place.

The result is Periodontitis, which can further cause problems in the rest of the body.


  1. Oral health and diabetes

Diabetes can lower your resistance to infection and can slow the healing process. The working relationship between diabetes and periodontitis may be the strongest of all the connections between the body and mouth.

People with diabetes are at special risk for periodontal (gum) disease, an infection of the gum and bone that hold the teeth in place. Periodontal disease can lead to painful chewing difficulties and even tooth loss.

Dry mouth, often a symptom of undetected diabetes, can cause soreness, ulcers, infections, and tooth decay.


  1. Oral Health and Heart Disease

Many of the risk factors for gum disease are the same as those for heart disease, such as tobacco use, poor nutrition and diabetes. Overall, people who have chronic gum disease are at higher risk of a heart attack, according to the Academy of General Dentistry.

Gum disease is caused by plaque buildup along and below the gum line. Some researchers have suggested that gum disease may contribute to heart disease because bacteria from infected gums can dislodge, enter the bloodstream, attach to blood vessels and increase clot formation.

It has also been suggested that inflammation caused by gum disease may also trigger clot formation. Clots decrease blood flow to the heart, thereby causing an elevation in blood pressure and increasing the risk of a heart attack.


  1. Oral Health and Pregnancy

A surge in hormones, particularly oestrogen and progesterone is the primary cause of changes in your oral health during pregnancy. These hormones lead to an exaggerated response of gum tissues to plaque.

If plaque isn’t removed it can lead to inflammation of the gum tissues (gingivitis) , gingival overgrowth, enlargement and eventually periodontitis; if left untreated. Excessive bacteria can enter the bloodstream through the gums, release hormones which may induce premature labor.

For the best chance of a healthy pregnancy, it is recommended to go for a comprehensive oral exam.


  1. Oral Health and Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis and periodontitis have an important thing in common, bone loss. Osteoporosis is a health condition that greatly affects the bones, since the disease weakens them and makes them capable of breaking easily.

Note that aside from negatively hampering overall health and wellbeing, osteoporosis also has a direct relationship on oral and dental health.

One should realize that the disease can hamper or damage jawbones. It also triggers dental and oral health issues, including gum or periodontal diseases and loss of teeth.


  1. Oral Health and Smoking

Not smoking is one of the most important things you can do for your mouth, and your body. A smoker’s risk of severe gum disease is three times higher than someone who does not smoke. This is because nicotine in cigarettes causes blood vessels to narrow, which in turn interferes with your gums’ ability to fight infection.


One thing is clear: the body and mouth are not separate. Your body, and mouth are capable of affecting each other prominently.


Taking good care of your teeth and gums can really help you live well, longer. A routine checkup, thus, doesn’t just help you take care of your oral health, but also your general health.


So, when are you booking your next appointment at The Dental Spa?