You take your health seriously. You get up early 4 times a week to exercise, and you always make sure to take some of your food home whenever you eat out. The healthiest people typically don’t even have to think about it. Good health is the base from which everything good in life comes from. This also includes your oral health, which can actually affect your oral health. Dr. Sapienza, your dentist in Park Slope, wants you to know just how important your oral health can really be.
Oral Health and Your Overall Health
Most of the time we think of brushing and flossing as serving a single purpose: to preserve our teeth and gums. This enables us to eat the healthy foods our bodies need and comfortably speak. While this is very important, studies have shown a lack in oral health may be linked to serious diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
Oral Health’s Connection to Diabetes, Heart Disease, and Cancer
It is accepted knowledge that people suffering from diabetes tend to suffer higher rates of gum disease, but new research suggests that it may be true the other way around as well. A lack of proper oral hygiene can lead to gum disease which can impact the blood’s ability to process glucose, and this is one of the primary causes of diabetes.
A meta-study published in the Journal of Periodontology and the American Journal of Cardiology showed a distinct correlation between gum disease and heart disease. A direct link has yet to be established, but it is believed that the inflammation common between the two diseases is where the connection lies.
Oral cancer can be the result of genetics or extensive tobacco use. Many times patients will not show any symptoms until the disease is at an advanced stage and has possibly spread to other parts of the body. Once this has happened, the typical 5-year survival rate is only 38%. A lack of oral hygiene can exacerbate regular tobacco use and facilitate the growth of cancer cells.
How Can I Maintain My Oral Health?
While these are three extreme examples of oral health impacting the rest of the body, in most cases a lack of oral hygiene leads to tooth decay, tooth loss, and gum disease. These are relatively simple issues to avoid, starting with consistent brushing and flossing. The quality of home dental care if one of the most important indicators of oral health. It is generally recommended that you brush and floss twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste. This is a lifelong habit that has lifelong benefits. In addition to this, it must be supplemented with regular visits to the dentist. Regular check-ups and cleanings are able to accomplish things you can’t at home. Teeth simply have too many tiny surfaces for you to reach where plaque and bacteria can build up. Twice a year visits can address these problem areas and keep you healthy year around. These check-ups are also where you can get oral cancer screenings, as early detection is one of the best ways to assure successful treatment
We’re here to Help
Your overall health is very important to us, which is why will do our part in maintaining it at the Dental Spa of New York. Regular brushing, flossing, and check-ups are a simple ways to preserve your health over time. If you have any questions about your oral health or what you can do to help yourself, please give us a call today.