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A Clean Mouth for Overall Health

Posted January 02, 2014 in Home, Oral Health

A smiling woman pointing to her perfect teeth on a white backgroundIt is generally known that keeping our mouths clean is important for our oral health, but many do not know that oral health is directly related to overall health. Many health issues originate in the mouth and then spread or contribute to problems in other areas of the body. So, while you’re practicing good habits and avoiding the bad to keep your mouth healthy, you are actually keeping the rest of your body healthy as well.

Prevent Health Problems From Disease

Good oral hygiene will help prevent diseases of the mouth, which will eliminate the risk of these diseases causing other health problems. One study conducted at the University of Texas found that poor oral health was a risk factor for oral human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. HPV has been shown to cause between 40 to 80 percent of oropharyngeal cancers. Gum disease is known to increase your risk for many ailments; 40 percent of the bacteria found in the arteries of stroke patients originated in the mouth, and bacteria from the mouth can combine with platelets in the blood and lead to blood clots, heart disease, and heart attack. Individuals with gum disease also have an increased risk of high blood sugar and chronic lung disease. Maintaining a good oral care regimen will keep your mouth clean and help prevent bacteria in the mouth from causing issues in the rest of your body. Surprisingly, taking care of your mouth may also help you achieve your weight-loss goal.

Healthy Weight

The desire for a healthy mouth can help you attain and sustain a healthy weight by motivating you to make good food choices for the sake of your teeth and by preventing mindless snacking. People often try to avoid sugary foods, such as soda and candy, when they are trying to lose weight, but this can be difficult. Preventing the sugar from damaging your teeth can give you additional encouragement to stay away from these harmful foods and choose hearty, fresh foods instead. Check out my previous blog for more information on how sugar harms the teeth. Small lifestyle changes like brushing your teeth more frequently can also help you lose weight. If you brush your teeth after every meal, the minty taste of the toothpaste left in your mouth doesn’t mix well with most foods, which will prevent you from going back for another helping. That fresh, clean feeling in your mouth after brushing (don’t forget the importance of flossing!) can also help stop you from polluting your mouth with an unnecessary snack.

If you have any oral health concerns, Dr. Kevin B. Sands is available at his Beverly Hills cosmetic dentistry office. To schedule your consultation, call (310) 273-0111 or fill out our online contact form today.