Gum disease is often thought of as a disease solely of the mouth. Unfortunately, this may lead some to underestimate its possible complications. Recent research has shown that the consequences of untreated gum disease, including advanced periodontal disease, aren’t just limited to your mouth. Poor oral health directly impacts your systemic health.
Let’s have a look at some of those potentially serious complications to demonstrate why it’s important to maintain good gum health under the care of a highly experienced periodontist—like those you’ll find here at South Shore Long Island Periodontics & Implantology. Contact us in our Wantagh, NY office if you have other health connection concerns.
It's all connected - How your oral health affects your whole body.
If you have diabetes, particularly poorly controlled diabetes, you’re more likely to develop bacterial infections in the mouth. In turn, these infections can impair your insulin-processing abilities, further impeding your ability to control your diabetes. This means that periodontal disease is likely to be more severe and difficult to treat than it would in someone who doesn’t have diabetes. If your diabetes is well-controlled, however, you’ll have better tolerance and response to treatment.
With more than 60 million Americans currently affected by heart disease, it’s the leading cause of the death in the U.S. Caring for your periodontal disease is a crucial step in preventing heart disease, as research indicates that those with periodontal disease are twice as likely to have coronary artery disease.
While researchers aren’t yet sure whether there is, in fact, a causal relationship, those individuals who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis are twice as likely to have periodontal disease. One theory is that chronic bacterial infections may trigger the immune response associated with rheumatoid arthritis.
When bacteria are consistently present in the throat and mouth, they may be inhaled into the lower respiratory tract and contribute to lung infections or worsening of existing lung conditions.
What You Can Do to Prevent Gum Disease
Something you can do every day to prevent serious gum disease from occurring is to keep good eating and drinking habits. Studies have suggested that adults who get at least half the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C are half as likely to develop periodontal disease. Some of the best sources of vitamin C include citrus fruits, strawberries, and dark-colored vegetables like peppers and broccoli. Also, drink plenty of fresh water to keep your mouth moist. If and when gum disease treatment becomes necessary, seek treatment from the pros—the three board-certified periodontists who work right here in our Wantagh, NY office. Our periodontists are exceptionally qualified to handle even the most advanced cases of gum disease through treatments like osseous surgery, laser gum treatment and more.
Don’t let poor oral health jeopardize your overall health!
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