How Brushing Your Teeth Affects Overall Health
It probably comes as no surprise that the team at our dental office in Tahoe is all for you brushing your teeth regularly. After all, we are dedicated to protecting our patients’ smiles, and brushing properly is an important step to help accomplish that goal. But we also know that brushing your teeth benefits more than just your dental health. The truth is, it can affect your overall health, too.
One of the most important reasons for brushing your teeth regularly is so you can effectively remove dangerous bacteria in the mouth. Bacteria will feed off of food particles that linger around long after you eat. It then gives off an acidic byproduct. This acid can eat away the teeth’s protective enamel, leaving them at risk for decay and cavities. A buildup of bacteria can also begin to affect gum health. If bacteria is not removed by brushing and starts to creep up under the gum line, you may quickly develop gum disease. Gum disease is a serious problem that affects the rest of your body.
A Closer Look at Gum Disease
Gum disease is a bacterial infection that can eventually lead to tooth loss if not treated by your dentist in Tahoe. Nearly half of American adults have some type of gum disease, some may not even know it. Common signs of gum disease include:
- Red, painful gums
- Chronic bad breath
- Bleeding while brushing or flossing
- Receding gums
While gum disease has unpleasant symptoms and may cause teeth to fall out, it’s even more concerning than that. In fact, research has shown a potential link between gum disease and other serious whole-body problems.
Gum Disease & Whole-Body Health
There have been several studies that have shown a strong connection between oral health and overall health. The U.S. Surgeon General has even referred to the mouth as a mirror to health throughout the body. Even though researchers continue to study exactly the cause of this connection, many of them have found that gum disease in particular may lead or contribute to:
- Respiratory Problems
- Heart Disease
- Diabetic Complications
- Some Cancers
Brushing your teeth twice a day, every day does a great job at removing the buildup of dangerous bacteria that could lead to gum disease and perhaps even more serious health concerns. But that’s not all. You also need to maintain regular visits to your dentist twice a year for a deep cleaning that removes plaque and bacteria that only a trained hygienist can remove safely and effectively.
If it’s time for your dental cleaning, we welcome you to call our Tahoe dental office to schedule an appointment.