Most of us are aware that it’s important to brush regularly to avoid dental disease. But did you know that looking after your teeth and gums could also help to reduce your risk of developing potentially life-threatening conditions?
Dental health and general health
Most of us brush our teeth to keep gum disease and decay at bay, but when you clean your teeth, you’re also taking steps to improve your general health. There is a growing body of evidence to support links between oral health and general health, and many dentists suggest that the mouth provides a window to the rest of the body. Gum disease is a common oral condition, which can cause premature tooth loss. However, scientists have also discovered a connection between harmful bacteria in the mouth and an elevated risk of heart disease. It is thought that bacteria can travel from the mouth to other parts of the body, prompting an inflammatory response, which can increase the risk of strokes and heart attacks. According to the Oral Health Foundation, people who have advanced gum disease are almost twice as likely to suffer from coronary heart disease than those with healthy gums.
Researchers have also established a relationship between gum disease and diabetes. If you have diabetes, your risk of developing gum disease is higher than average, but studies show that gum disease can also increase your risk of type 2 diabetes. If you have diabetes, and you’re worried about potential complications, you may find this page useful http://www.ada.org/~/media/ADA/Science%20and%20Research/Files/patient_18.ashx.
Prevention is always better than cure, and dental experts are keen to promote preventative measures in a bid to lower the risk of both dental and general health problems. The best ways to reduce the risk are to maintain good oral hygiene at home and visit the dentist on a regular basis. If you haven’t been to the dentist in the last six months or you’re not even registered with a local office, now is a good time to make some calls, and book a dental check. It’s very common to feel apprehensive about seeing the dentist, but if you take a look at websites like www.artarmondentists.com, you can find information about modern techniques and services that are designed to eliminate anxiety.
It can be difficult to overcome dental fear, but the sooner you sit in the dental chair, the better. If you avoid going to the dentist for long periods of time, the risk of dental disease will be higher. When you go to the dentist, they will check for any potential warning signs of oral conditions, and they can also offer advice if you’re keen to improve your oral hygiene routine at home.
It’s easy to assume that brushing is all about preventing decay and gum disease, but research suggests that there are even more benefits linked to looking after your teeth and gums. If you don’t already prioritize dental health, now is the time to brush up on oral hygiene, arrange an appointment with your dentist, and start paying more attention to your mouth.