Is there a connection between oral health and overall health?
Yes, recent research suggests that there is a connection between oral health and overall health. Infections in the mouth can be linked with problems in other parts of the body, including heart disease, strokes, diabetes, giving birth to a premature or low-birth-weight baby, and respiratory (lung) disease. The bacteria from gum disease can get into the bloodstream, affecting the heart by causing platelets in the blood to stick together, which can make clots more likely to form. Bacterial chest infections are also thought to be caused by breathing in fine droplets from the throat and mouth into the lungs. It is important to visit your dental team if you have any symptoms of gum disease and tell them about any changes to your general health or medication. Good oral hygiene can help prevent gum disease and its related health problems.
It is thought that regular exercise and a healthy diet may help to boost the body’s immune system and reduce inflammation in the gums, which can prevent gum disease from developing or getting worse.
However, it’s important to note that exercise and diet should not replace regular dental check-ups and good oral hygiene practices. These are essential for maintaining good dental health and preventing gum disease.