What Does Oral Health Have to Do with Systemic Health?

There are simple steps to keeping your smile consistently healthy, such as brushing your teeth twice and flossing at least once every day, as well as visiting your general dentist routinely for preventive checkups and cleanings. In some cases, maintaining your good oral health may be more complex, and more involved treatment may be required to address a problem that has developed. In any case, the benefits that come with consistently maintaining your good oral health can often be more profound than many people realize. Today, we examine the connection between your oral health and systemic health, and why a healthy smile matters to your physical wellbeing.

Oral-systemic connections

Oral-systemic health describes the connection between the state of your oral health and its influence on one or more areas of your overall, systemic health. For example, the presence of a chronic oral health concern could lead to reactions throughout your body that can negatively impact your risks of certain systemic health conditions. Also, certain serious systemic diseases, such as cancer, can manifest early symptoms in your oral tissues, and connecting those signs could be vital in detecting and addressing the disease as early as possible.

Oral health and systemic disease

One of the more frequently experienced oral-systemic health concerns involves the development and progression of periodontal (gum) disease. The disease involves the infection of your gum tissues by harmful oral bacteria, certain types of which can lead to unchecked inflammation throughout your gums. As the disease grows more severe, so does the level of inflammation in your gums and oral tissues. In severe cases, this can impact your immune system’s ability to control inflammation in other areas of your body, including the heart, lungs, brain, and other vital systems. Because of this connection, many people who exhibit severe periodontal disease also have higher risks of developing chronic inflammatory conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and more.

Oral pathology concerns

The pathological study and treatment of oral health diseases, also known as oral pathology, plays another significant role in your overall oral-systemic health. Your oral health specialist can carefully and comprehensively examine your oral tissues for pathological concerns, such as oral disease or cancer, and detect some of the earliest signs of such conditions. For example, symptoms such as changes to the color or texture of your oral tissues, or the development of ulcers, lesions, or sores, may be indicators of systemic health concerns that require specialized treatment, preferably as soon as possible.

Learn more about oral-systemic health

Maintaining your good oral health can have several important implications for your long-term systemic wellbeing. To learn more, or to schedule a consultation, call Santa Rosa Oral Surgery in Santa Rosa, CA, today at 707-545-4625.