By itself, taking care of your teeth and gums is good. Practicing good oral hygiene habits prevents tooth decay, bad breath, and gum disease. There are many short and long term benefits that come with taking care of your teeth and gums, not the least of which is being able to keep most of your teeth as you get older.
Apart from these, there are also other reasons that make dental hygiene a very important part of maintaining your overall health and well-being. Scientists have been saying for a long time that where there is poor oral health there is likely poor overall health; where there is poor overall health, there is likely poor oral health.
It’s more important than you think
Your oral condition is an indication for your overall health. Would you believe that your mouth is teeming with bacteria? Without good oral hygiene the level of bacteria in your mouth can reach levels that lead to gum disease or tooth decay. In some instances, bacteria from your mouth can travel throughout your body and cause disease.
Commonly, though, bad oral hygiene habits result in toothaches and facial pain that are nothing less than debilitating. It will affect your normal daily functioning because the pain distracts you from your tasks. It leads to poor nutrition since you cannot eat certain food and it can also hamper social interaction, especially when you have halitosis.
There are also many systemic diseases that show symptoms in your mouth. Diabetes, for example, often first shows up as mouth lesions. In fact, the Mayo Clinic asserts that there are conditions that affect and are affected by your oral health. These conditions include endocarditis; cardiovascular disease; pregnancy and birth; diabetes; HIV/AIDs; osteoporosis; and, Alzheimer’s disease. In some cases, poor oral health is a contributing factor in the development of these conditions.
Doctors have also found out that about 90% of diseases and other conditions manifest symptoms in your mouth. Therefore, it is not surprising that dentists are more often becoming the first line of detection for many conditions. This is why regular visits to your dentist are a key component in maintaining your overall health.
Keep your mouth healthy
There are a few things you should get into the habit of doing to maintain, if not improve, your oral health. Perhaps the most important is to properly brush your teeth at least twice a day. Doing it properly means you remove the plaque and food debris between the teeth and the gum line. Here are other things you need to do to keep your mouth clean and healthy:
● Floss daily to remove plaque and debris in between teeth that your toothbrush cannot reach.
When you experience the following, you also need to visit the dentist:
● painful teeth
● mouth sores that last more than two weeks
● gum abscess
● loose teeth
● bleeding gums
● cracks in the corner of the mouth