06 Feb 2016 How Can Heart Health and Dental Health be Related?
Did you know your heart health is directly linked to dental health? A healthy mouth is one of the first lines of defense against heart disease.
In contrast a mouth that’s full of bacteria and decay has a direct correlation to heart disease and a risk of the bacteria in the mouth traveling through the blood stream to the heart. Experts say there are other reasons why these two seemingly unrelated aspects of health could be related. For instance, both diseases face trouble with inflammation. Unlike a child losing a tooth, hardened arteries are usually due to inflammation in the body. Similarly, plaque progression is an inflammatory process.
Which Conditions Could be Linked to Oral Health?
Oral health can affect or be affected by a number of conditions and diseases, such as:
- Pregnancy and birth: Periodonitis can result in low birth weight or premature birth.
- Cardiovascular disease: Research shows clogged arteries and heart disease could be affected by oral bacteria infections and inflammation caused by the same bacteria.
- Endocarditis: This is a heart infection that affects the interior lining, or the endocarium. This normally occurs when bacteria from another area of the body affects the heart through the bloodstream.
- HIV/AIDS: Oral problems like mucosal lesions are common in those afflicted with auto-immune diseases.
- Diabetes: Diabetics are less capable of resisting infection, which makes the gums at greater risk for developing disease.
- Osteoporosis: When the bones become weak and brittle, they can result in tooth loss or periodontal bone loss.
- Alzheimer’s disease: Experiencing loss of teeth before the age of 35 could suggest upcoming Alzheimer’s disease.
Because there are so many links to poor health and poor oral hygiene, it’s not hard to imagine that your heart can be adversely affected by neglecting to care for your teeth. It’s also a good idea to inform your dentist if you have experienced any recent illnesses, are taking any medications or deal with a chronic condition like diabetes.
How to Protect Oral Health
It’s important to practice great oral hygiene on a daily basis:
- Brush twice a day
- Floss once a day
- Eat lean meats and avoid snacks
- Use a fresh toothbrush every three months
- See the dentist regularly
Contact Us Now!
From family services like removing baby teeth or handling a child losing a tooth to adult procedures like teeth cleaning and repairs, Holladay Family Dental offers years of experience, friendly and welcoming staff and state-of-the-art equipment. At our office, you’re not just a patient–you’re one of our own family members. Be sure to get in touch with us today to schedule an appointment so we can put that smile back on your face!