4 Oral Health Problems that Might Impact Your Physical Condition

Updated on December 21, 2020

Some people don’t bother taking very good care of their teeth. They don’t brush very often, and they might never floss. They might eat candy all the time, smoke, chew tobacco, etc.

Tooth and gum problems are inevitable with these individuals. Their teeth will probably start falling out at some point, and the remaining ones might see some discoloration. 

They will also likely experience significant mouth pain eventually. They might not be able to eat many of the foods they once enjoyed.

All of that is distressing, but those are far from the only reasons you should take better oral care. Let’s look at a few other reasons that some people might never consider.

Mouth Bacteria Might Affect Your Heart

Some studies have indicated that if a person has gum disease, they are more likely to have heart disease. Medical science:

  • Isn’t sure why that it
  • Has seen this enough to know that there is a correlation  

If you have gum disease, you need to treat it since it’s probably going to cause you serious pain, and it’s not a condition that will go away on its own. This isn’t the sort of thing where a dentist can grab some dental burs and simply cut it out. You will probably need gum graft surgery.

Aside from that, though, when a dentist sees you have gum disease, they are also probably going to send you to a cardiologist so they can take a look at your heart. Heart disease is possible.

The Diabetes and Gum Disease Connection

Studies have also noticed a gum disease and diabetes correlation. Diabetes:

  • Increases your body’s infection risk
  • Increases gum disease development rates

It all has to do with your body’s elevated blood sugar. If you have elevated blood sugar, you will more likely develop gum disease, but then, once you have it, it’s tougher to keep your blood sugar levels in check.

It’s a vicious cycle, and having both conditions at once will make you truly miserable. It’s proof positive that you should eat a healthy diet at the same time you should exercise better oral care.

You can also help in these areas by brushing and flossing after each meal. You can rinse your mouth out with an antiseptic mouthwash daily. If you have sensitivity, you can get the gentle kind with no alcohol. If you know you have family diabetes history, see your doctor frequently to check for it.

Dry Tongue and Mouth

There is a condition called Sjogren’s Syndrome. It’s not something you can prevent. It’s just something that a small number of people develop naturally.

If you have it, you will probably have oral health problems. Your body’s immune system attacks your saliva glands and tear ducts. This means you will have a chronically dry mouth and eyes as well. The doctors call this xerostomia.

You need saliva because it protects your teeth and gums. If you do not have enough of it, bacteria can build up more easily. Bacteria, of course, causes gingivitis and cavities.

A perpetually dry mouth means tooth decay or gum disease are both more likely. If you have Sjogren’s Syndrome, you will have to sip water throughout the day, so your mouth does not dry out. You should also avoid smoking even more than the average person.

Watch Out for Certain Medications

You also might notice that particular medications can dry out your mouth. It says so on the warning labels, but it doesn’t work out that way for everyone. Your physiology has something to do with it too.

Again, if you have a chronically dry mouth, you should have gum disease and cavity concerns. If you take antihistamines, antidepressants, some pain killers, or decongestants, any of those could dry out your mouth.  

You can drink more water to counteract this. You can set a smartwatch to go off throughout the day, reminding you to drink. Better hydration will help you in other ways too, so this system has multiple benefits.

You can also talk to your dentist or doctor about switching up the drug regimen. Maybe they can put you on another medication that will not affect you the same way.

You should watch out for stress-related tooth grinding. Osteoporosis can cause tooth loss as you get older, and anemia can cause dental issues.

If any of this is happening with you, speak to your dentist so they can advise you on the best solution.

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