Oral & Overall Health Connection
Our body functions as one system. How we take care of our mouth has an impact on the rest of our body. lth. Early detection of serious medical conditions occurs every day in the dental office. More than 120 diseases can cause specific signs and symptoms in and around the mouth and jaw.
Health problems with oral indicators that can potentially be identified through a dental exam include:
Oral Cancer - can affect any part of your mouth, including gums, cheeks, tongue and lips
Diabetes - diabetics are more likely to experience periodontal destruction - dry mouth, distinctive breath odor, burning tongue, high rate of tooth decay, inflammation and infections in the mouth
Heart Disease - there is a correlation between early indicators of gum disease and atherosclerosis, a condition in which plaque builds up inside the arteries and causes coronary artery disease
Dementia/Alzheimer's Disease - a study from the National Institute on Aging found an association with oral health and dementia1. Having a condition, such as dementia or Alzheimer's, can also make it more difficult to practice good daily oral hygiene, increasing the risk for gum disease and tooth decay.
Other medical conditions with oral indicators - kidney failure, anemia, anorexia nervosa and bulimia, and deficient immune system (HIV Positive). Read more about the symptoms.
While not a health condition, when a woman becomes pregnant, there are drastic changes in her hormone levels. These changes can seriously affect a woman's dental hygiene and can intensify dental disease. Learn more.