For years oral health has been viewed exclusively from systemic health. However, just because you need to have specialized schooling to become a dentist, doesn’t mean oral health isn’t connected to the rest of your body.
Your dentist in Fort Worth wants you to know oral health can no longer be viewed separately from your overall health. Without proper preventive care, dental issues can manifest into disease in places outside the mouth. Keep reading to learn the connection and the steps to address it.
Gum Disease Affects the Rest of The Body
According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, half of American adults suffer from some form of periodontal disease. That equates to about 64.7 million individuals 30-years-old and older. Depending on the severity, having periodontal disease increases your risk of many other health conditions, including the leading cause of death in the U.S., heart disease.
Having moderate to severe gum disease puts your body at higher risk in many ways. For example, it can:
- Severely stress your immune system
- Lower your resistance to other infections
- Increase the severity of diabetes
- Contribute to respiratory disease
- Contribute to low preterm birth weights
- Interfere with proper digestion
- And even shorten your life expectancy
It’s time to realize that oral health and overall health are forever tied together; to ignore this relationship only puts you at higher risk for disease.
What Other Dental Issues Can Affect Your Body’s Health?
Aside from gum disease, other conditions can affect systemic health as well. For example, if your root canal or jawbone becomes infected, bacteria can easily enter that part of your body and spread to other organs.
If you’re allergic to certain dental materials or have non-biocompatible materials installed, an allergic reaction could reject those materials, creating more complications. When your body rejects medical materials, systemic toxicity sets in, negatively affecting your nervous and immune system. This is why keeping your doctor informed is essential to staying healthy.
For Your Health: Taking Preventive Measures
Your risk is better determined based on the severity and length you’ve had these issues and will help your dentist better understand how to treat you.
As educated as health practitioners are, no amount of schooling can prepare them for fixing an issue if they don’t to look for it. Be sure to keep your family doctor as well as your dentist in the loop on current health conditions you’re having. If you’re dentist says you’re suffering from moderate periodontitis, your family doctor should know as well. On the flipside, if your doctor says you have a weakened immune system, your dentist should absolutely know.
To stay proactive, inform your dental professional of any pre-existing conditions and restorations you have so they can better assist you. Keep all your doctors’ health charts updated of your conditions, regardless of the field of practice.
Know the relationship between oral and systemic health with your Fort Worth dentist. Schedule your next appointment today to stay on top of your body’s health!
About the Author
Dr. John G. Boyd, D.D.S., began his dental career by attending Texas State University. He eventually earned his dental degree from the University of Texas Dental Branch-Houston and went on to become a teaching advisor for the L.D. Pankey Institute. He’s also involved with several dental associations, including the ADA, the Texas Dental Association, and the Fort Worth District Dental Association. To contact his practice, give him a call at (817) 882-8282 or visit his contact page.