How Does Oral Health Affect Overall Health?

How Does Oral Health Affect Overall Health?

Oral health might be one facet of your overall wellness, but it plays a significant role in the way you feel and function. Neglecting basic oral hygiene can have negative effects on other bodily systems. You should understand how your attention or inattention to dental health impacts your overall physical and mental state. Your dentist can help you improve these practices.

What to do and not do to achieve good oral health

During a person’s busy life, it is understandable how regular dental habits can go by the wayside. However, it is critical to always brush twice a day and floss daily. People of all ages should visit the dentist every six months. In between appointments, patients can come in more frequently for treatment and restorative care. Limiting sugary foods and beverages can also keep teeth and gums strong. Patients with braces, crowns and other appliances should take good care of them.

The problem with bacteria

It is not difficult to see the negative results of poor brushing and flossing habits. When a person neglects these activities, food particles will get trapped in between the teeth. Eventually, these will develop bacteria, leading to decay and infections. At first, the person will feel pain in the teeth and may have swollen gums. A visit to the dentist’s office can restore the patient’s oral health by cleaning out the teeth and remove this buildup.

However, untreated, bacteria can spread. A tooth infection can travel into other parts of the mouth and into the neck and ears. If there is still no intervention, the bacteria can get into the person’s lungs, causing pneumonia and other respiratory issues. In the worst situations, an abscessed tooth can be life-threatening.

Flossing matters

It only takes a minute or two, but flossing can have long-lasting, far-reaching benefits. Studies have linked regular flossing to low risks of cardiovascular disease. Conversely, someone who struggles with this aspect of oral health may have a higher chance of developing high blood pressure. The results of this condition could be something even more serious such as a heart attack or stroke.

Gum disease and pregnancy

Occasionally forgetting to floss should not cause much concern. However, when a person puts this off for months or years, bacteria can take over. Gum disease such as periodontitis can result. This is a significant culprit in bone and tooth loss. Plus, health professionals say this oral health problem can cause pregnancy issues such as poor development and low birth weight.

Take charge of your oral health

It is nice to go to the dentist and find out that you do not have any cavities and that your gums are healthy. You will be even happier to realize that sound oral health means that you likely have control over your total health. There is nothing more important to achieving healthy living. Start by adopting good dental hygiene practices. When you realize the implications that come from brushing and flossing, you will never want to let your guard down on these daily efforts.

Request an appointment here: or call Phoenix Family Dentistry at (602) 547-9007 for an appointment in our Phoenix office.


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