In the U.S., most patients visit their dentist every six months. During these check-ups, the dentist examines the teeth and gums for signs of decay and early signs of gum disease. Early intervention can often correct the issue if these conditions present symptoms. Professional dental cleanings are also a routine part of these semi-annual exams, but are they always needed for every patient? Are dental cleanings necessary?
The Importance of Dental Health
A clean, healthy smile is appealing to see and can give a person a boost of confidence, but the benefits are more profound than good looks. Good dental health is critical to good health for the body in some surprising ways. Unknown or unaddressed mouth conditions and infections place the body at risk for significant illness. Routine Dental Cleaning tackles many of these factors while safeguarding general health.
Relationship Between Dental Hygiene and Overall Health
The mouth is the body’s largest orifice and is the principal avenue for food, water, and medication to enter the body. This doorway teems with bacteria, some of which are beneficial and help the body digest nutrients and fight off disease. But, not all the bacteria living around the teeth and gums are beneficial. When the balance of good and bad bacteria is not aligned, disease and illness can occur.
Halitosis or bad breath is an abundance of sulfur-producing bacteria in the mouth. Activities like smoking cigarettes and poor oral hygiene promote these types of bacteria. The balance between the good and bad bacteria in the mouth is delicate and affected by the kinds of foods eaten, medications taken, and even the level of saliva produced in the oral cavity.
A profusion of harmful bacteria in the mouth leads to an unhealthy microbiome contributing to body illness. Inflammatory bowel disease, obesity, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s Disease are a few severe health conditions linked to an unbalanced gut microbiome. Researchers are currently studying a potential link between Anxiety, depression, Parkinson’s disease, and gut health, but the initial results are promising.
Gum disease is a gum infection that initially attacks and destroys the soft tissue around the teeth and, if left untreated, destroys the bone supporting the teeth causing tooth loss. Gingivitis is the early form of gum disease, and by receiving treatment at this stage, the condition is reversible. Periodontal disease is the more severe form of gum disease, and though a dental professional can treat the disease at this stage, the resulting tissue loss is not replaceable.
Dental Health is a Powerful Weapon Against Disease
Dental conditions vary from person to person, and scheduling routine dental check-ups and cleanings is a potent tool in fighting for a healthy mouth and body. Regular dental cleanings help reset the bacterial balance in the mouth and keep the harmful bacteria from taking over and causing infections and diseases. Your healthy, white teeth can last a lifetime with the proper support and care and by visiting your dentist for routine dental cleanings and preventative maintenance.