Our bodies are deeply complex systems, with every element of our health having an impact on every other area. This once controversial idea has been proven through ongoing research, with the implications becoming clearer with every passing year. The most recent discoveries point to our oral health having broad-reaching impacts that are only slowly becoming understood. Certain elements like periodontal disease, making blood sugar harder to control in diabetics have been known, but posture problems sourcing from problems with the TMJ and a correlated increase in cancer concerns are new.
More Health Concerns Related To Poor Oral Health Are Discovered Every Year
Degree of Heightened Risk of Cancer Related To Gum Disease Severity
A 22-year study involving thousands of patients has revealed a startling discovery involving a link between periodontal disease and cancer. Periodontal disease gets its start as gingivitis, an infection of the gums that leads to swelling and often includes bleeding while brushing. Ongoing care from your family dentist can reverse the onslaught of gingivitis and prevent further damage. If not treated promptly, however, periodontal disease can appear. This disease takes hold beneath the gum line and can attack the bones, roots, and gums. Those living with periodontal disease are also at higher risk of cancer, including:
- Esophageal Cancer
- Colorectal Cancer
- Breast Cancer
- Lung Cancer
Ongoing research continues to reveal new connections between our systemic health and the health of our oral structures. Our smiles may suffer from poor oral hygiene, but with increased cancer risks, that’s only the beginning. Failing oral health can affect every element of our health.
Heart Disease Is Also More Common In Patients With Periodontal Disease
Steps To Protect Yourself From The Ravages of Periodontal Disease
What this means for the average dental patient is that protection from periodontal is more important than ever. Start by establishing and maintaining a dental hygiene routine that is consistent and includes twice a day brushing, flossing, and the use of mouthwash. Seeing your dentist on a regular basis is another essential element in protecting your teeth from the ravages of oral decay. They’ll provide a deep professional cleaning and polishing and can add on root scaling and planing when periodontal disease threatens your smile. This process removes plaque, tartar, and biofilm from your roots and smooths the surface to prevent their regrowth.
Research continues to improve our awareness regarding the heightened health risks that come along with gingivitis and periodontal disease. The historical habit of treating oral health and medical health as separate topics is slowly fading into the past. Today physicians and dentists alike know that maintaining total body health requires addressing them together. If you’re eager to take steps to protect yourself from the potential risks of uncontrolled periodontal disease, reach out to your dental provider and schedule a visit today.