Your Oral Health and Its Link to Your Overall Health

Your Oral Health and Its Link to Your Overall Health

A regular dental cleaning may be the key to far more than just your dental health. Numerous studies over several decades have revealed that your overall health is directly linked to your dental health. Your gums, teeth and even breath can indicate a number of diseases.

Every day, the foods and beverages you consume contribute to plaque formation. Plaque is a clear, sticky substance that harbors bacteria that can irritate your gums and stimulate an inflammatory response, not just in your gums but also throughout your entire body. This inflammation can become chronic and is associated with an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, Alzheimer's disease, pregnancy complications, breast cancer, oral cancer and osteoporosis.

Gum disease is almost entirely preventable. Certain risk factors, such as inadequate dental hygiene, smoking and a family history of gum disease, can make you more prone to developing gum disease. Twice-daily brushing and once-daily flossing is essential to maintaining good daily dental hygiene. Your biannual dental exam is just as important. This exam gives our dentist an opportunity to check your mouth for signs of dental diseases and other conditions as well as make treatment recommendations.

While gum disease is a major predictor of disease, it's not the only dental condition linked to your overall health. Bad breath may indicate diabetes, kidney or liver disease, or acid reflux. Sores can be cold sores, herpes, or they may be a sign of oral cancer, which is linked to HPV, a sexually transmitted infection. Dry mouth can indicate diabetes, other conditions, or be related to medications.

Contact us today to learn more or to schedule your dental checkup with Dr. Bijan Afar DDS, Los Angeles dentist.