How Does Gum Disease Affect Your Overall Health?

How Does Gum Disease Affect Your Overall Health

03 Jun How Does Gum Disease Affect Your Overall Health?

Periodontal disease is inflammation of the gums and bone structure surrounding the teeth. Periodontal disease develops over time if you neglect basic oral hygiene such as brushing and flossing. When a person doesn’t brush or floss, plaque builds up on and around the teeth, and along the gum line. Even after you realize after the fact that you need to brush and floss more often, the plaque still resides between your teeth and gum line: only a dentist can remove it. That’s why it’s also crucial to get a cleaning twice a year. Even if you brush and floss regularly, plaque and other particles are still trapped along the gum line.

We know why it’s important to brush, floss, and visit the dentist twice a year for a cleaning. But why is it crucial? Will my health be affected if I don’t take care of my mouth? Read on to learn how gum disease affects your overall health.

First, how do you know if you have gum disease? Don’t ignore the following signs:

Bad breath

Perhaps you’ve noticed your breath stinks even after you brush, floss, and use mouthwash. Also, if you have an unpleasant taste in your mouth, it’s time to see the dentist.

Sensitivity to food while chewing

Even the slightest pain in your gums should not be ignored. For most people, tenderness, and discomfort of gums is the first sign of gum disease.

Gums bleed easily

When you brush and floss your teeth, your gums bleed easily; this is not normal, and you need to see a dentist right away.

Swollen or red gums

Your gums are red and swollen during your regular oral hygiene routine.

Now that you know the early signs of gum disease find out how it affects your overall health.

Gum Disease Affects Your Overall Health

Gum disease is devastating to your mouth, perhaps causing tooth loss and other oral problems. But if you don’t address the issue soon, gum disease can inadvertently affect other parts of the body. Think about it: our mouth is likened to a portal to other areas of the body. After chewing and swallowing food and liquids, it passes from the mouth, through the throat, and into other areas such as the intestines, stomach, etc. Imagine for a moment if you didn’t take care of your mouth. The bacteria that are already forming in your mouth from gum disease is also spread throughout the body.

Recent studies show that gum disease is linked to certain types of cancer, including, but not limited to breast cancer, esophageal cancer, and pancreatic cancer. Periodontal disease can also cause other health problems such as heart disease, pregnancy complications, and stroke.

Dentists always tell us to brush our teeth twice a day and floss at least once a day for a reason. They know the seriousness of not taking care of our oral health. Research has shown that not practicing oral hygiene also leads to other health problems such as cancer.

Daniel Allen, DDS

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