If you want to keep your body healthy, keeping your mouth healthy should be one of your top priorities. Your oral health and your overall health are closely linked, so in this blog from Brightside Family Dental, we’ll look at a few common dental problems and how they can affect your overall health.
Cavities are caused by improper oral hygiene, and occur when sugar builds up in your mouth. Bacteria feed on the sugar, and excrete acid that wears down your tooth enamel. This causes permanent damage to your teeth, and may eventually lead to a tooth infection.
Minor cavities can cause sensitivity to hot and cold beverages, and tooth pain that may make it harder for you to eat your favorite foods. People with multiple cavities may also have a harder time cleaning their teeth properly, as they may experience pain and tenderness when brushing their teeth.
While cavities do not have a lot of negative effects on your overall health, tooth infections do. A tooth infection occurs when an untreated cavity eats through the outer layers of your tooth, and infects the “pulp” inside your tooth.
This pulp is what keeps your tooth alive, and it contains a lot of nerves and delicate blood vessels. Over time, the pulp will continue to rot and die, and this will result in the loss of your tooth.
That’s not all, though. Tooth infections can also cause a fever, sinus infections, and a rare blood infection called “sepsis,” in some cases. High levels of bacteria in infected teeth have also been associated with a higher risk of heart disease, and could cause an inflammatory heart disease called bacterial endocarditis.
If you believe you have an infected tooth, you need to get root canal therapy from a qualified dentist like Dr. Manish Mistry right away. The sooner you get care, the better your outcome will be.
Gum disease is an infection of the gums caused by inadequate oral hygiene. If you don’t care for your mouth properly, bacteria-filled plaque and tartar will build up between your gums and teeth, causing a gum infection.
Eventually, this can lead to permanent tooth damage and tooth loss. But the effects of gum disease are not just limited to your mouth. Gum disease is associated with a wide variety of other health issues. For example, bacteria in the mouth can travel into the lungs, raising the risk of respiratory infections, bronchitis, pneumonia, and even COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).
Gum disease has also been linked with serious cardiovascular issues, such as a raised risk of a heart attack or stroke. This is thought to be due to the inflammation caused by your body’s immune response to the presence of gum disease. If bacteria spread throughout your gums into your bloodstream, this inflammation can worsen existing cardiovascular issues.
Caring for your mouth is an essential part of maintaining your whole-body health. So if you’re overdue for a six-month teeth cleaning and oral exam in Chapel Hill, don’t wait. Contact Brightside Family Dental online or give us a call at (919) 391-0046 to schedule your next consultation right away.