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3 Parts Of The Body Affected By Poor Oral Health

Keeping your mouth and teeth healthy is more important than ever. That's because dentists and other health professionals are increasingly coming to realize the strong link between oral health and the rest of the body. Unfortunately, many people have yet to catch up with these important areas of research. This article will help get you up to speed by uncovering the links between your oral health and three other parts of your body.

Your Heart

Poor oral hygiene practices can have a deleterious effect on the health of that all-important organ, your heart. At the root of the problem are gum diseases such as gingivitis and periodontitis. Those who suffer from such ailments have been shown to carry a much higher risk of strokes and heart attacks.

Doctors believe that this negative relationship has to do with the presence of certain bacteria. Those suffering from gum diseases tend to have much higher levels of these bacteria in their blood streams. This is believed to accelerate the development of atherosclerosis, or plaque that builds up in the arteries. Atherosclerosis has been proven to have links to both heart attacks and strokes.

Your Joints

Gingivitis and periodontitis and may have a negative impact on more than just your heart. Recent research has been suggesting that such gum diseases may increase the chances of developing arthritis in your joints. Doctors uncovered this link through a study that correlated tooth loss to arthritis. It was found that the more teeth an individual had lost due to gum disease, the greater the risk of their developing rheumatoid arthritis. Receiving treatment for gum disease, therefore, could end up reducing your risk of developing arthritis down the line.

Your Brain

Alzheimer's disease is a widespread disease among elderly Americans, affecting approximately 5.3 million individuals. Recent research has detected a strong link between oral health and forms of dementia, such as Alzheimer's. It is believed that this is caused by porphyromonas gingivalis, a species of bacteria linked with poor oral health.

A recent study among senior citizens sought to uncover the relationship between porhyromonas gingivalis and dementia. The results showed that those who brushed less than once a day were at a much greater risk of developing some form of dementia. Because those with more regular brushing habits were able to keep bacteria levels in the mouth lower, they stood a much lower chance of suffering from Alzheimer's and other diseases of the brain.

Contact a local dentist, like Pike Dentistry, for more help.