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Can gum disease predict your health? Correlations between our overall health & periodontal disease

Find out the direct connection between the gum disease and your health, and learn tips to prevent gum disease.
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By: Dr. Deok Sung

Your mouth is the entrance to your body, so it’s no surprise that oral health is intimately related with your overall health.

People suffering from gum disease or periodontal problems are more likely to face serious health complications. The most common cause of gum disease is not keeping up with your oral hygiene routine (brushing, flossing, regular dental cleanings and checkups). Ignoring oral hygiene can lead to the build-up of plaque which is a film-like substance consisting of harmful bacteria (this is the stuff you can scrape off your teeth with a fingernail if you don’t brush your teeth – yuck!). In turn, plaque can harden into a substance called calculus which can cause severe gum disease. Just like in any infection, your body will react against the bacteria and result in inflammation (swelling) of the gum tissues. You will see this if, for example your gums bleed easily or when flossing. The bacteria that collects in your gums makes its way to the bloodstream, which can  damage the blood vessels and have an really negative affects on your brain, heart and other body parts over time.

What health problems can be caused due to gum disease?

Scientific studies are finding stronger and stronger links between your oral health and your overall health. It is no longer a question of IF gum disease and overall health are linked but now a question of HOW they are linked. The link is undeniable. People with gum disease have a much higher likelihood.

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Breast Cancer
  • Cardiovascular problems
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Diabetes
  • Pancreatic Cancer
  • Low Testosterone
  • Prostate Disease
  • Lung Cancer
  • Pneumonia
  • Dementia and Cognitive Decline
  • Alzheimer’s Disease

The list goes one…Worried? Us too! Preventing and treating gum disease are essential components of your health, and your dentist is here to help. We treat patients every day who start off with bleeding gums, loose teeth, bad breath and poor oral health. Sometimes life takes over and our brushing or flossing just aren’t on the top of the list of priorities. We get it. That’s why at West Olds Dental we approach our patients with compassion, zero judgment and the highest level of care.

Along with coming to your regular cleanings and checkups, it’s important to develop a routine at home. It’s easy to slack on self care routines but I hope reading some of the links to how oral health is connected to overall health has given you some motivation!

Tips to Avoid Gum Problems

  • Brush your teeth daily - Brushing your teeth on a daily basis helps to clean your oral cavity. It gets rid of the food particles stuck in between your teeth and in turn, reduces the chances of bacterial growth.
  • Floss your teeth regularly - Flossing is equally important as brushing your teeth. A floss is like a thread that cleans the areas in between your teeth that cannot be reached by the toothbrush. So, never skip flossing before going to bed.

You can get in touch with the an award winning dentist at West Olds,Dental to see if you have or are at risk of having gum disease. Our team is here to help you in a compassionate and competent way. Contact West Olds Dental for any questions and to schedule your free consultation! Call us at (587) 872-5874 or visit online at www.westoldsdental.ca  and Book Your Appointment Now!