It goes without saying that a healthy smile is typically a happy smile. Studies show that people who have clean, straight teeth, and good-looking gums have more confidence and smile more often. Finding a dentist is a key part of getting your mouth it its best condition. Beyond appearances, maintaining good oral health is an important part of an individual’s overall wellbeing, as these four examples demonstrate.
Going to our Minnetonka dentist at least twice a year can actually protect your heart. Periodontal diseases are conditions that affect the gums, and the conditions are most visible through bleeding or receding gums. According to the American Academy of Periodontology, people who have these types of conditions are actually twice as likely to have a coronary artery disease. Why? Because bacteria and other germs can enter into the bloodstream through openings or diseased areas in the mouth and make their way into your heart.
For that same reason, maintaining a healthy mouth can also keep the lungs safe. When germs are in your bloodstream, they can also travel down into the lungs. Bronchitis, pneumonia and other pulmonary diseases have been linked to certain periodontal diseases.
Pregnant women are instructed to see a dentist at least once during the pregnancy. While some tests such as X-rays are off the table, a dentist can ensure that a woman’s mouth is in good condition through cleanings and other exams. This is especially important because there is a link between premature births and gum disease. According to a study from the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, women who used an antimicrobial rinse twice a day were as much as 75% less likely to have an early delivery.
On the other end of the spectrum, a healthy mouth can actually help ward off dementia during the elderly years. Losing teeth as a child is a must; but losing adult teeth before a certain age is usually chalked up to either an accident or disease. The Journal of the American Dental Association released a report that said people younger than 35 who lose teeth due to disease are actually more likely to suffer from dementia as they get older. A dentist can diagnose, treat and prevent conditions that would lead to tooth loss.
Interestingly, your overall health can also affect the state of your mouth. Certain cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, osteoporosis, and other conditions can lead to inflammation of the gums, tooth loss or gum disease. Individuals who have these health conditions should seek the help of a dentist in order to keep bacteria from spreading into the oral cavity.
The general recommendation is that everyone – even children – see a dentist twice a year. Professionals have tools that can remove stubborn plaque. Additionally, our Maple Grove MN dentists can spot the warning signs of periodontal disease and other conditions that could be potentially harmful. On the advice of a dentist, an individual can treat or prevent these issues, which have been linked to serious health conditions. Dentists such as those at Blue Ridge Dental can help patients through professional cleanings, problem-solving and treating conditions. To find out more about keeping your mouth healthy, visit Blue Ridge Dental Center.