The benefits of good oral health for your whole body should not be underestimated. Unfortunately, many people unintentionally put themselves at risk for serious health problems by skimping on oral health care. Consider: one in four American adults have untreated tooth decay, while nearly half over the age of 30 have some form of gum disease.1
The benefits of oral health are much more than a beautiful, pearly white smile. By practicing good oral hygiene, you’ll help keep your whole body as happy and healthy as possible.
4 Surprising Health Benefits Of Good Oral Health
Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease (periodontitis), is an infection that causes inflammation, bleeding, soreness, and receding gums. Left untreated, gum disease can result in the loss of a tooth or teeth. In addition to these uncomfortable symptoms, gum disease and the excess of oral bacteria that comes with it have been linked to several severe health problems.
By regularly caring for your oral health, you’re doing yourself a favor by protecting against the abovementioned problems. Let’s dive into 4 of the most surprising health benefits that come with proper oral hygiene:
#1: Reduced Risk For Heart Disease and Stroke
The bacteria found in cases of periodontitis can contribute to disease not just in the gums but throughout the body. This bacteria can enter the bloodstream and increase inflammation, contributing to the risk for cardiovascular problems such as heart disease, heart attacks, and even strokes. More specifically, periodontal disease increases the risk for cardiovascular disease by around 20%.2
#2: Improved Diabetes Management
Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes are conditions that heighten the blood sugar levels in the body. This increases a person’s risk for gum disease, cavities, dry mouth, and thrush. Furthermore, periodontitis has been linked to increased blood sugar levels, making diabetes more difficult to manage.3 For these reasons, taking care of your oral health from the start will improve the management of diabetes and decrease the likelihood of oral side effects.
#3: Better Pregnancy and Birth Outcomes
A healthy mouth during pregnancy increases the likelihood of a smooth sailing pregnancy and birthing process. Studies found that excess bacteria from gum disease can get into the mother’s bloodstream and negatively impact the fetus’s health by increasing the risk for premature birth and low birth weight.4
#4: Healthier Respiratory System
Since bacteria from gum disease can find their way into the respiratory system, better oral health is often associated with healthier lungs and respiratory functioning. This is especially important to be mindful of in the age of the pandemic, as studies found that patients with periodontitis fighting COVID-19 were more likely to need assisted ventilation and die from complications.5
The Best Practices For Maintaining Optimal Oral Hygiene
With all of the health benefits that come with good oral health, what’s stopping you from taking better care of your gums and teeth? Some of the best practices for preserving your oral hygiene and health include:
- Brush and floss teeth twice a day
- Schedule regular dental appointments to routinely clean teeth and screen for cavities, gum disease, and other oral health concerns
- Try to avoid or limit your intake of cavity-causing foods and beverages such as chewy candy, soda, alcohol, and sugary pastries
Perfect Your Oral Health With Empire Dental Care Today
To prevent gum disease, cavities, and other oral problems from negatively impacting your health, don’t hesitate to schedule regular cleaning with Empire Dental Care today. Contact our team or call 585.671.1750 to find out how we can help you with a wide range of cosmetic, general, and preventative dental services.