Did you know that your oral health can say a lot about the rest of your body? More than just the point of entry into your body, your mouth can be an indicator of unrelated health conditions. Your oral health can also affect how well your body fights infection, so it’s important to visit Red Maple Dental in Asheville regularly to keep your smile — and your body — in peak condition!
Our bodies are home to billions of living organisms, both inside and out. Most of these are essential to daily bodily functions, such as digestion, so there’s no need to worry about how many invisible bacteria you’re hosting!
Lots of bacteria live in the nose and mouth, and they have a few different purposes. Some are there to help guard against infection, such as in the nose. Others are just along for the ride and are not harmful, and there are certainly plenty of invading bacteria lurking as well. When we consume food, some residue gets left behind on our teeth. After a while, bacteria start consuming this food residue and cause plaque build-up.
Bacteria love feeding off of sugary foods and starches, so that’s why dentists advise against too much candy and carbs. The residue left behind in the mouth is dinner for oral bacteria, so if you do wind up having lots of sugar, make sure you brush your teeth at least twice a day. That will keep bacteria from building up and eating away at tooth enamel and the gums.
Left untreated, plaque can lead to gum disease or tooth decay, and that can in turn affect how well our bodies can fight off other infections. For example, studies have shown a possible link between endocarditis and poor oral health. Endocarditis is when an infection from one part of the body travels through the bloodstream and infiltrates the lining of the heart. Making sure your mouth is clean and healthy minimizes the possibility of spreading infection from the mouth to the heart.
Research shows that 90% of systemic medical conditions are somehow exhibited in the mouth. Gum disease is linked to uncontrolled diabetes. Lesions in the mouth can indicate autoimmune diseases. Osteoporosis can lead to broken teeth because bones aren’t as strong as they should be.
The good news is that the Red Maple Dental team is always ready to help you keep your oral health in check at our Asheville office. Schedule an appointment online or call (828)-358-1925 today!