Your Smile:  Gateway to Your Body

Heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and heart attacks. What do they have to do with your dental health? More than you might realize.

It turns out that your mouth is essentially the “gateway” to the rest of your body. By peeking inside and taking a look around at your gums and oral tissues, you can gain a sense of how healthy your other internal organs are…to an extent. When your mouth isn’t healthy, it strains your immune system. But not only that, bacteria can spread into other parts of your body via your bloodstream.

For example. If you have moderate to severe gum disease, your gum tissues will have pulled away from your teeth, creating deep “pockets”. Inside of those pockets are colonies of dental plaque and tartar. Your gums will also bleed easily, due to the deterioration taking place. When they do, the dental plaque can spread directly into the bloodstream and be transported to other areas of your body, including your heart, blood vessels, and vascular tissues around the brain.

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It’s no surprise to see how gum disease can statistically increase your chances of cardiovascular disease. But your heart and brain aren’t the only things at risk. Active periodontitis is also shown to jeopardize medical conditions like:

  • Diabetes
  • Pregnancy
  • Infertility (both men and women)
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Pneumonia

…and possibly dementia/Alzheimer’s disease, among others.

Maybe your smile isn’t as healthy as you know it needs to be. Fortunately, Eastport Dental in Mesa can help. Dr. Vinh Huynh will evaluate your tissue attachment, bone levels, and bacterial deposits to screen for gum disease at the earliest stages. That way we can intercept periodontal disease to boost your oral and systemic health.

The more severe your periodontal disease, the more likely you are to have an aggressive form (or more difficult to manage case) of one of the above-mentioned medical conditions. Scientific research continues to show us new conditions linked to gum disease as each year goes by. So instead of putting your oral health on the back burner, the best thing you might want to do is to re-vamp your dental care routine!

Do Dental Cleanings Boost Your Health?

Depending on the severity of your gum infection, you may only need traditional dental cleanings or a more rigorous series of deep cleanings (periodontal therapy.) The good news is that research suggests that most people see an improvement in their underlying health issues within just 2-3 months after treating their periodontal conditions! So, if you’re struggling with stabilizing your blood glucose levels or trying to conceive, make sure your smile is healthy too. By lowering the bacteria inside of your mouth, you can give your immune system and wellness the leg-up it needs to tackle other health issues.

Keep in mind that cleanings are just the first step. You’ll also want to adapt your oral hygiene plan to control plaque levels so that they don’t relapse into where they were prior to treatment. That way you can maintain gum and bone structures before they lead to tooth loss.

“My Parents Had Bad Teeth…”

Unfortunately, gum disease can sometimes run in families. It’s not that it’s a genetic condition, it’s more that oral hygiene habits tend to be shared among family members. Kissing and sharing food can also allow oral bacteria to pass on from one member of a household to the next. Dietary habits also come into play. So, if periodontitis is something your family has struggled with in the past, you have all the more reason to take steps toward bettering your oral health.

Now is the time to break the trend. Even if your parents or grandparents lost their teeth to gum disease, you don’t have to. In fact, it puts you at an advantage to know you need to spend extra time on your teeth and gums to prevent infection in the first place. 

How to Reduce Biofilm Levels

Physical removal of dental plaque and calculus is essential. Daily brushing and flossing are a must, especially flossing down under the gumlines between teeth. Disrupting the plaque prevents it from calcifying. But there will still be some buildup here and there, which is why it’s so important to schedule regular cleanings. That way tartar is removed while buildup is at a minimum.

Call Our Mesa Dentist

Eastport Dental in Mesa can show you how to get your smile healthy again, so that you have the tools you need to address bigger health issues. Call our office today to schedule your next dental exam!

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