Beyond the Mouth: A Closer Look at Oral Hygiene
Dentists go on about the importance of oral hygiene, but this piece of fact cannot be stated enough. Oral health consequences not only affect the mouth but also create a chain reaction that impacts the entire body. They also affect the efficacy of dental treatments.
Without good oral hygiene, many dental procedures have a decreased life span, explain The Priory Dental Practice, whose dentist in Aldridge is a passionate advocate of a clean mouth. In some cases, dentists cannot perform the procedure at all.
Here’s a closer look at oral hygiene and how it makes or breaks you:
A deadly habit
Let’s say you skipped brushing for a fortnight. It seems innocuous enough – for now. But it may easily turn into a habit, and one night becomes two weeks. One obvious consequence is tooth decay; another one that is less apparent is increased risk of heart disease and diabetes. Gum disease, an effect of bacterial build-up in the mouth, is linked to systemic diseases. One word: inflammation.
The body’s reaction to infection
The immune system weakens when the soldiers, the white blood cells, do not function well. A gum infection causes your white blood cells to work inefficiently as they attack a detected invader. This is because your entire body is undergoing a system infection, otherwise known as inflammation. Poor oral hygiene only exacerbates gum disease until it reaches its final, most severe stage.
This is very bad news for your body. Responding to temporary infection is a healthy reaction, but frequently subjecting the body to chronic inflammation may set off our immune system into a harmful overdrive that in turn affects different organs and the circulatory system.
Linkage with other diseases
Leaving gum disease to develop introduces you to a lifetime of irreversible damage. Often, chronic inflammation is associated with diseases such as Type 2 diabetes, stroke, heart disease, Alzheimer’s and even cancer. Proper hygiene reduces risk of chronic inflammation, and thus the risk of these deadly illnesses.
There is no going around the rule: taking care of your teeth and gums is one of the most important investments you can make.