Why good brushing habits are an investment in your health

Your mouth plays an important role in contributing to your general health. Decayed teeth or bleeding gums harbour millions of bacteria. Aside from possibly causing a toothache or a dental or gum abscess, these bacteria can be harmful to your general health.

“The work your immune system has to do (commonly called inflammation) to combat these bacteria drains your body and can lead to health issues or complicate conditions such as diabetes, heart health or even impact the course of your pregnancy.”

Here’s a few conditions that can be impacted:

1.Hip and knee replacements

Many people these days are having hip and knee replacements at earlier ages and having a mouth full of germs can lead to complications with the surgery or the success of the implanted joint.

2. Heart Disease

People with gum disease are 50% more likely to suffer a fatal heart attack than those with healthy gums. Keeping your teeth and gums clean is vitally important for those who have had artificial valves or other heart surgery, to minimise the risk of bacteria building up on the replacement valve.

3. Healthy mouth, healthy pregnancy

There is increasing amount of research that shows that it is really important to keep your gums healthy and clean during pregnancy, to minimise the risk of preterm birth or low birth weight. Also not many people realise that the bacteria that a mother has in her mouth is transferred to her baby. So if the mother has a lot of active tooth decay or thick build up of bacteria on her teeth and gums, these germs are transferred to her baby and increase the risk of the baby having cavities in their baby teeth prior to the age of two.

4. Diabetes

Diabetic people are more prone to gums disease and in turn poor gum health can lead to poor control of blood sugars and unstable diabetes. Diabetes also results in dry mouth which can lead to more tooth decay. Diabetics are more susceptible to infections and if they have a dental abscess this can lead to hospitalisations and prolonged healing following dental surgery.

5. Oral Cancer

Treatment of oral cancer can be devastating. Smoking and drinking alcohol contribute to an increased risk of mouth or throat cancers. HPV oral and oropharyngeal cancers can be harder to detect than other oral cancers. Having regular screening for oral cancers can improve your chances of a suspicious lesion being picked up early and receiving appropriate treatment.

6. Treatment for osteoporosis

Many people are taking medications to decrease the risk of fracturing a hip as they become older. These medications change the way bone regenerates which is great for strengthening your skeleton, however it can lead to problems if you need to have a tooth extracted, as the bone can fail to heal the way it should. Before starting these medications it is essential your teeth and jaws are checked and any problem teeth removed. Once on the medications, actively maintaining your oral health is essential.

These are just a few links between your mouth health and the rest of your body. To keep on track with your overall health, make sure that you are maintaining a healthy mouth as part of your program.

If you have any questions please call the practice on 69215799 or you can book an appointment online here  https://beststdental.com.au/book/

Kimberley Hayllar