Eating healthy foods will help you maintain overall better health, no doubt. But recent studies are revealing that the connection between your teeth and overall health goes much deeper. You may be alarmed at some of the serious conditions that can relate back to your mouth.
You are What You Eat
There’s truth to the old “you are what you eat” adage. If you eat nutritious foods, your body will be healthier. If on the other hand you eat carbs and candy, your body may function like an engine that’s not running on all cylinders.
Then subtract previously healthy teeth as they decay from too much sugar intake or below-average health, and you’ve got a vicious cyclical situation. You want to eat healthier, but you don't have the teeth to chew hardy, whole foods!
While this scenario might seem a little extreme, it can happen. If your teeth don’t fall out, they may still suffer damage. And it all may begin with a common culprit called gum disease, or periodontal disease.
Recent Research Links Teeth and Overall Health
In a recent study, people with serious gum disease were 40% more likely to have a chronic condition on top of it.
How are teeth and overall health linked, specifically by gum disease?
Basically, when your gums become inflamed or infected, your immune system goes into attack mode, causing more inflammation. Bacteria are more prone to building up, which can eat away at your gums and jaw bone or even enter your body and cause infection elsewhere.
So what are some conditions linked to gum disease?
Diabetes seems to be the strongest connected condition to the periodontal disease. Inflammation seems to weaken the ability to control blood sugar, which in turn, creates an environment prone to breeding bacteria.
Also, up to 91% of patients with heart disease have periodontitis, compared to 66% of people with no heart disease. Essentially, inflammation in the mouth causes inflamed blood vessels and heightened risk for a heart attack.
Other research suggests that both infection and inflammation inhibit a fetus’ development while in the womb.
Plus experts suspect that gum disease (periodontitis) may also play a role in other chronic conditions:
- lung conditions
- rheumatoid arthritis
The Happy Tooth Team is Here to Help
Read more about gum disease and how you can prevent it now. If you already have inflamed or bleeding gums, call your dentist at The Happy Tooth to set up an appointment ASAP, and before more damage is done.
Your teeth and overall health are undoubtedly connected. Your teeth help you feed your body nutritious foods, and you need a healthy body to keep your teeth!