Oral health is crucial for overall health. A headache can be a symptom of poor oral health, and unchecked bad oral habits can lead to cardiovascular disease. According to the Mayo Clinic, your mouth “offers clues about [the] overall health” of a person. Harvard recently came out with findings that also link dental conditions to the rest of the body, such as infections of the heart and brain.
The Den of Bacteria
The mouth is a cesspool of bacteria. Most of the bacteria found in our mouths are harmless. But as the entryway to other tracts in the body, some of the bacteria found in our mouths are dangerous. Certain medications and food reduce the flow of saliva and increase the number of bacteria living in a mouth, which showcases the importance of oral health and awareness of what we put in our mouths. The mouth-body connection is growing in relevance in linking oral habits to the overall health of a person.
Results of Poor Oral Hygiene
Poor oral habits and care can lead not only to certain dental conditions but also other health complications as well. Mayo Clinic lists these four diseases and conditions that research is suggesting is tied to oral hygiene:
- Infection of the heart’s inner lining or valves can be caused by bacteria spread through the bloodstream.
- Cardiovascular disease
- Some studies are linking inflammation and infections to oral bacteria.
- Pregnancy & birth complications
- Premature births and low infant weight at birth have been tied to periodontitis.
- Oral bacteria traveling to the lungs can cause pneumonia and other respiratory-related issues.
Always speak to a physician regarding any other these conditions and if they might be caused by poor oral hygiene and habits.
Ways to Keep Your Mouth Healthy
As more and more studies show the link between dental health and general health, a good place to start is ensuring the practice of good oral hygiene.
Good oral hygiene should include:
- Using a soft-bristled toothbrush
- Being cautious of or avoiding hard foods and sugary drinks
If you are concerned about your oral health, there is no better time than now to start the journey to a healthier you! To learn more about our dental services, call us at 713-668-2289 or fill out our contact form to request a consultation with Dr. Konig. We are pleased to support our clients in attaining their dental and oral goals. Our practice is proud to serve Houston, TX, and the surrounding areas.