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  • Writer's pictureSheen Dental

Professional advice from a hygienist in Richmond about your oral health and physical well-being

We are often told that oral health should be as much of a priority as our physical well-being and that the two are intrinsically linked. But how? And how does neglecting the one impact the other?

In this article, our hygienist in Richmond at Sheen Dental will break down the connection between the two and help you make informed choices for a healthier future.

Taking a closer look inside your mouth

Your body is home to vast numbers of micro-organisms, including bacteria. Your mouth is not immune, and bacteria, both good and bad are found abundantly in the gaps between your teeth, your gum line, the roof of your mouth and your tongue.

When your mouth is healthy and functions normally, it can naturally defend itself against the worst kinds of germs, using saliva to neutralise acid attacks and wash away food particles.

The state of your mouth will probably deteriorate if you do not produce enough saliva or if there is excessive plaque present in your mouth, resulting in problems such as tooth decay and gum disease.

There may be times when infections enter your bloodstream and are carried to other parts of your body, causing inflammation and spreading the virus.

What are some of the body diseases linked to poor oral health?

- The potentially devastating effects of gum disease and inflammation

Studies have shown that there is a connection between certain cardiovascular diseases - strokes and heart attacks, for example, and uncontrolled bacteria originating from your mouth, like gingivitis and severe oral inflammation.

- Control your sugars

On the flip side, a symptom of diabetes could be poor oral health, because the disease makes your body less resistant to diseases like gingivitis. Controlling your diabetes could help to manage the mouth infections listed above.

- A balanced diet = a healthy heart and improved dental health

Eating poorly or following a diet deficient of nutrients is not just bad for your physical health and your skin condition, but can also cause oral inflammation that leads to difficulty eating, chewing and talking.

- Affects you psychologically

Having bad teeth could also impact the state of your mental health by affecting your self-esteem or causing you anxiety or depression.

- Periodontitis in pregnant women

Advanced gum disease in pregnant women has been found to impact the health of their unborn foetus, resulting in premature, underweight and sickly newborns.

- Early symptoms of HIV/AIDS

It is common for HIV-AIDS sufferers to experience mouth complications, such as lesions or mouth sores, because of a compromised immunity. Failure to have lesions treated leads to them spreading throughout the body. A dentist or hygienist in Richmond can identify signs of HIV/AIDS and other potentially fatal diseases so that they can be treated accordingly.

Poor oral health might not be fatal in itself, but it could point to diseases and conditions in other parts of your body that might be detrimental. At the same time, taking proper care of your mouth, with the help of a hygienist in Richmond could very well save your life!


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