The different parts of the human body are linked through a network that scientists and medical professionals are still discovering more about daily. However, dentists and cardiologists have already found a connection between oral and heart health. As you continue reading, a dentist in Copperas Cove explains how the two seemingly unrelated parts of the body are related, and how dental neglect can spell big problems. Additionally, you’ll learn what you can do to protect yourself.
The Integral Role of Blood
You’re already well aware that without blood flow, there can be no existence. The vital fluid that travels through the body’s internal highway system, called veins and arteries, carries vital nutrients and waste products so that you can function at your best. This also means that if there is a problem in a particular area, the blood that flows from it could transport the same issues elsewhere.
This provides the first glimpse into why dental health is so important. The same blood that saturates your gums, moves throughout your body. Thus, if you’ve neglected your dental care, you can eventually be faced with some serious challenges.
The Problem That Plaque Causes
At any given moment, you can find thousands of oral bacteria living inside your mouth. When you consume foods and beverages, any leftover debris attracts the bacteria. As the microorganisms feed, they release acids that can eventually mix with your saliva to form plaque, which is a clear-gooey substance. The growth, which may seem harmless at first, can eventually cause cavities to develop, but that’s not all.
Plaque that’s allowed to seep beneath the gum line can cause the formation of germ pockets, which interrupts the natural snugness of the soft tissue around the roots of your teeth. One of the initial warning signs is gum bleeding – the first stage of periodontal (gum) disease.
How Your Gum Health Can Impact Your Heart
Untreated gum disease will only continue to get worse. The infected and inflamed blood can eventually flow to the heart to cause plaque development in your arteries, which is a serious problem. That’s because it can lead to heart disease or even cardiac arrest, both of which can place your life in jeopardy.
For maximum protection, here’s what you should do:
- Brush and floss at least two times a day to limit oral bacteria growth.
- Drink water after each meal to help rid your mouth of any leftover debris.
- Limit your consumption of sugar, as it’s the food of choice of oral bacteria.
- Don’t ignore any gum bleeding or the other warning signs of gum disease, like chronic foul breath or a sour taste that won’t go away.
A final way to protect your mouth and heart is to visit your local dentist semi-annually for examinations and cleanings. Therefore, any abnormalities can be identified earlier so you can receive the appropriate treatment to restore your oral health. Your teeth, gums and heart will thank you!
About the Author
Dr. Daniel Caraveo is a graduate of the Baylor College of Dentistry. While he possesses the skills and experience to treat a host of dental issues, he places the greatest emphasis on prevention. Dr. Caraveo provides superb preventive care at Benchmark Family Dental, and he can be reached for more information through his website.