Can Poor Oral Health Influence Other Chronic Diseases?

Dentists have long suspected that poor oral hygiene and health can cause other diseases in the body such as heart disease, diabetes, pregnancy complications, etc. Their suspicions have proved to be true. 


Poor oral health is often associated with gum inflammation, bacteria in your mouth, and infection in the gum line. The bacteria and infection can spread from your mouth to the other parts of your body. Arlington dentists can prevent the development of health-threatening diseases by helping you maintain quality oral hygiene. 


Periodontal Disease And Diabetes


Doctors believe that people with diabetes are more likely to develop periodontal disease than non-diabetic people. The people who do not have their diabetes under control are more at risk. 


Diabetes is associated with blood sugar levels. Periodontal disease can boost the blood sugar level in the body, which alone can cause health risks. Again, diabetes can thicken blood vessels, making it difficult for the body to remove excess sugar from the mouth. Extra sugar in the mouth can cause various oral diseases. 


Periodontal Disease And Heart Disease 


Although not confirmed, there are various theories as to how periodontal diseases are linked with the heart. When oral bacteria can cause periodontal disease to enter a person’s bloodstream, they attach themselves to the walls of the heart’s arteries. This can narrow down the coronary arteries and lead to blood clot formation, culminating in a heart attack or stroke. 


Periodontal Disease And Pregnancy Complications


When a pregnant woman has periodontal disease, the baby is exposed to various types of health risks. A woman experiences hormone fluctuations during pregnancy which puts her at a greater risk of developing periodontal disease. Periodontal diseases during pregnancy can lead to preeclampsia and result in delivering premature or underweight babies. 


Gum infection or periodontitis during pregnancy can also harm the baby. Periodontitis can increase levels of prostaglandin in a woman’s body, which can cause labor before the proper time and result in the baby’s premature birth. 


Periodontal Disease And Respiratory Problems


The mouth is the gateway to several types of diseases. When bacteria caused by periodontal disease or poor oral health travel from our mouth to our lungs, it can cause respiratory problems. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a respiratory problem almost always caused by smoking and worse in patients with periodontal diseases. 


Additionally, patients with respiratory problems often have low immunity caused by bacteria in their bodies, including their gums. This proves that bacteria can colonize your gums and affect your immune system. 


There are direct and indirect connections between the body and the mouth. Your body can affect your mouth, as well as your mouth can affect your body. Therefore, investing in oral hygiene can help you live longer and healthier. 

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