4 MIN READ | Wellness

Elena Deeley

How Oral Health Can Impact Your Overall Well-being

Cite This
Elena Deeley, (2020, December 20). How Oral Health Can Impact Your Overall Well-being. Psychreg on Wellness. https://www.psychreg.org/oral-health-impact-well-being/
Reading Time: 4 minutes

You do not have to be a genius to know that taking good care of your gums and teeth is extremely important. Great oral health can prevent many other serious conditions. You are not jeopardising your teeth, but other parts of your body as well.

Many people decide to go to the dentist only when they start experiencing toothaches or someone says they have bad breath. Although both of these things are unpleasant, unfortunately, things can become much worse if we neglect them.

I do not mean to scare you by telling you this. I just want to stimulate you to pay more attention to this and avoid any further damages.

Teeth and overall health

Poor nutrition

We all know that good nutrition and a healthy diet are generally important for our well-being. If our teeth start to decay or are missing, then all of these factors impact our chewing. We are not able to eat normally.

Whether it is due to the pain caused by the damaged tooth or because it’s not there anymore, eating regularly becomes a difficult task. Once our teeth are infected, we become more sensitive to numerous foods and drinks, especially cold ones.

This leads to avoiding certain types of foods that might be extremely beneficial for our health and can lead to small amounts of fibre, vitamins, and many other things. Furthermore, those teeth that are missing can gravely affect our diet and worsen current health conditions.

Heart attack or stroke

Most people think that high cholesterol, along with being overweight, is the main reason for both heart attack and stroke. Although they can be, professionals at Dental Consulting claim that bad oral hygiene can contribute to this too.

If you do not floss or wash your teeth every single day, it slowly leads to increased amounts of plaque on your teeth. If that happens, you are at greater risk of stroke and heart attack. According to some studies, the bacteria that inhabit oral plaque can block arteries. Namely, it goes directly into the bloodstream and causes either stroke or heart attack.

Diabetes

Those who are suffering from diabetes are more prone to gum disease. It’s because these people are generally more susceptible to infections. It’s even worse if you do not know that you have diabetes or if your condition is not under control.

Therefore, if you’re dealing with this illness, it’s of great importance to have a regular check-up at your dentist because gum disease can potentially increase your blood sugar. Increased levels of sugar can then cause numerous diabetic complications.

Another negative aspect of this disease is that you need more time to heal from any infection or wound. Therefore, once you go to the dentist, ensure to notify them about your health condition before having any treatment.

Other impacts of oral disease

Alzheimer’s disease

Unbelievably, but there’s also a connection between this illness and your teeth. Namely, a lot of studies have shown that gingivitis (gum disease) can play a major role in whether an individual will develop Alzheimer’s or not.

It’s because the bacteria that causes this condition can move from your mouth to your brain. It then starts creating a protein that damages our nerve cells in the brain. All these things can cause memory loss and eventually this disease.

Now, this doesn’t mean that this bacteria only can cause this, however, if it inhabits your body, you are at greater risk than those people who do not have any oral issues. If you start brushing and flossing your teeth regularly, you will likely avoid this bacteria.

Low-quality sleep and productivity

When we’re in pain it makes us feel less comfortable, plus we start to get worried about the income. All of this affects our sleep and leads to insomnia. Now, it is widely known that if we do not sleep well, we are less productive the next day.

This issue doesn’t impact adults only, but children too. According to some research, a lot of kids lose school days due to this problem. That’s why it is also important to inform your children how beneficial it is to have regular oral hygiene.

Pregnancy

All pregnant women know how important it is to use prenatal vitamins, as well as to avoid alcohol and certain foods, not to mention regular visits to the doctor. However, what they probably do not know is that they should visit their dentist too.

Namely, the rise in pregnancy hormones can potentially make things worse when it comes to their dental issues. What’s even more upsetting is that periodontitis can increase the chances of premature birth as well as low birth weight.

Jaw pain and headaches

If you’re experiencing a jaw joint issue or bruxism (teeth grinding), then it is highly likely that you will start feeling jaw pain or headaches. There’s a condition called temporomandibular joint disorder that can lead to limited moves in your jaw.

If this occurs, you will probably hear ‘click’ whenever you move it. Jaw pain, along with headaches are usually the most common side effects of this problem. On the other hand, teeth grinding is also another thing that can cause discomfort or pain. A good dentist will be able to diagnose it on time.

Pneumonia

Air goes directly through your mouth and then to your lungs. If there’s any amount of bad bacteria in your mouth, it will easily find a way to get to your lungs and cause this condition or any other respiratory issues. This is especially dangerous for older people because pneumonia can frequently be life-threatening for them.

Take care of yourself

Our health, including oral, must be everyone’s priority. People generally neglect any issues until it’s either too late or when they are experiencing awful pain. Don’t let this happen to you too. As you can see, no one should mess around with their oral hygiene because it can lead to some serious health issues.


Elena Deeley did her degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. She has an ongoing interest in mental health and well-being.


Disclaimer: Psychreg is mainly for information purposes only. Materials on this website are not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis, medical treatment, or therapy. Never disregard professional psychological or medical advice nor delay in seeking professional advice or treatment because of something you have read on this website. Read our full disclaimer here

Copy link