You may be reading more and more in the news about the connection between oral health and overall health. That’s because scientists continue to discover concrete evidence of the link between the two.
According to the Mayo Clinic, oral health can offer clues about your overall health. They say that studies suggest that oral bacteria and the inflammation associated with severe gum disease might play a role in some diseases. In addition, the Mayo Clinic maintains that certain diseases, such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS, can lower the body’s resistance to infection, making oral health problems more severe.
Research has also found an association between gum disease and rheumatoid arthritis (RA), an autoimmune disease that causes inflammation of the joints. Evidently, the mechanism of the destruction of connective tissues in both gum disease and RA is similar.
Chronic inflammation from gum disease has also been associated with the development of cardiovascular problems like heart disease, blockages of blood vessels, and strokes.
Additionally, adults with gingivitis performed worse on tests of memory and other cognitive skills than did those with healthier gums and mouths, according to a report in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry. Those with gingivitis were more likely to perform poorly on two tests that measured skills used in everyday life; delayed verbal recall and subtraction.
Good oral hygiene, visiting your dentist on a regular basis, and eating a balanced diet will reduce your risks of gum disease – and improve your overall health and well-being!