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Nicholas Dose, DMD Family Dentistry
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The Link Between Oral Health and Chronic Diseases

added on: May 28, 2024

Maintaining good oral health is much more than having a bright, beautiful smile. Emerging research has continuously shown a significant connection between oral health and overall physical health, particularly concerning chronic diseases. Understanding this link is crucial, not only for maintaining a healthy lifestyle but also for preventing more severe health complications.

Understanding the Connection

Oral health and overall health are more interconnected than one might initially think. Here’s how poor oral health can affect your body:

  • Heart Disease: Individuals with gum disease (periodontitis) are at an increased risk of developing heart disease. The inflammation caused by gum disease may be responsible for the association.
  • Diabetes: Gum disease often makes it harder to control blood sugar and exacerbates diabetes symptoms. Conversely, managing diabetes can improve oral health.
  • Respiratory Infections: The bacteria from infected gums and teeth can be breathed into the lungs or travel through the bloodstream, leading to respiratory diseases such as pneumonia.

How Good Oral Health Can Help

Keeping your mouth clean and healthy has more benefits than one might expect. Here are some key ways maintaining good oral health can help prevent chronic diseases:

  • Reduces Inflammation: Regular brushing and flossing reduce gum inflammation and the risk of gum disease, which is linked to heart disease and stroke.
  • Helps Control Diabetes: Good oral hygiene is very beneficial for people with diabetes, as it helps control blood sugar levels.
  • Prevents Bacteria Spread: Good oral hygiene practices help prevent the bacteria in your mouth from spreading to other parts of your body, reducing the risk of infections.

How Your Dentist Can Help Keep You Healthy

Your dentist in Lake Oswego is a key part of your wellness team and can provide comprehensive oral care supporting your overall health. 

  • Regular Check-ups and Cleanings: To catch and treat problems early, preventing complications related to chronic diseases.
  • Periodontal Care: Specialized treatments to address gum disease and its effects on your health.
  • Educational Resources: Guidance on how to maintain optimal oral health at home, which in turn helps manage or prevent chronic diseases.

Take Action for Your Health

Understanding the extensive connection between oral and overall health illuminates dental hygiene’s critical role in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. By focusing on good oral hygiene practices, seeking regular dental care, and addressing any concerns early, you can significantly contribute to your long-term health and well-being. 

Contact our office today if you are looking for a dentist in Lake Oswego who understands the critical link between oral health and chronic diseases. We’re ready to help you achieve and maintain optimal oral health, a vital step towards a healthier life. Don’t overlook the importance of your oral health—your body will thank you.