The importance of dental hygiene has been taught to us right from school times. Good dental health not only makes your appearance pleasing but it also affects your overall health. Many people associate poor dental health with tooth loss or cavity problems. Stephen D’souza – Dental Practitioner and Student, Mumbai, says bacteria present in the mouth can lead to serious health problems like diabetes and respiratory problems. Today, we list a few of these health problems caused by the body-mouth connection
Dental Hygiene Problem # 1: Periodontal disease
Bad dental or oral health can lead to periodontal or gum disease. It is a condition that starts out as gingivitis, which causes red, swollen and bleeding gums. When not treated it can become more severe, and can destroy both the gum tissue and the bones that support the teeth.
Dental Hygiene Problem # 2: Endorcarditis
Endocarditis is an inflammation of the inner layer of the heart. This is caused by bacteria present in the mouth. The bacteria enter in your bloodstream through minor gum disease or cut in your gums.
Dental Hygiene Problem # 3: Cardiovascular disease
When untreated, the bacteria that causes Periodontitis and is present in the mouth, can cause various types of heart disease, clogged arteries and stroke.
Dental Hygiene Problem # 4: Memory loss
Bad dental health not only affects your heart, but it also affects brain. Poor dental hygiene is connected to the narrowing and blocking of brain arteries. When the arteries of the brain are affected by the bacteria, it can lead to memory loss or dementia.
Dental Hygiene Problem # 5: Diabetes
The relationship between diabetes and poor dental health is the strongest. The irritation that starts in the mouth weakens the body’s ability to control blood sugar. People with diabetes have trouble processing sugar because of a lack of insulin, the hormone that converts sugar into energy.
Dental Hygiene Problem # 6: Difficulty in conceiving
A recent study conducted by the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology stated that women with bad dental health or any gum disease can take a long time to become pregnant. The best way, to avert this consequence is by preventing gum disease through brushing and flossing.
Dental Hygiene Problem # 7: Pregnancy problems
Women with gum disease are twice as likely to have pregnancy related complications. The complications are low birth weights and premature babies. This is because the chemical that induces labor is present in oral bacteria. As the gum problem increases the level of this chemical increases, leading to pregnancy complications.
Dental Hygiene Problem # 8: Cancer
Recent studies have found a link between poor dental health and certain types of cancer. It includes head, neck, esophagus and lung cancer. The risk of developing these types of cancer is due to poor brushing habits, tooth decay and periodontal disease.
Dental Hygiene Problem # 9: Lung problems
Periodontal disease may make pneumonia and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease worse, possibly by increasing the amount of bacteria in the lungs.
Dental Hygiene Problem # 10: Obesity
Studies have found a link between obesity and gum problems. It appears that periodontitis develops more quickly in the presence of higher body fat.