When it comes to being healthy, the immediate thoughts that come to mind of most patients are working out, eating healthy, and sleeping well. While wellness activities can ensure a healthy mind and body, most of us often forget to also include healthy dental practices to maintain our oral health.
As a trusted dentist in Charlotte & Concord, Modern Family Dental Care aims to remind patients about the importance of oral health to our overall health. In this post we will share how the inflammation in your mouth caused by dental conditions links to your overall well-being.
The inflammatory response of the body and its connection to oral health
Inflammation is the immune response of the body when it is under attack. Our body sends the white blood cells to the affected area to fight foreign bodies such as bacteria and viruses. As the white blood cells are poured into the infected area, pus is formed to isolate the bacteria and prevent it from spreading to our body.
Inflammation may be involved in several medical and dental conditions but it is not entirely bad for our body. The right kind of inflammation can be beneficial to our healing process. However, long-term or chronic inflammation can be life-threatening, if left untreated. There are two types of inflammation which include:
Acute inflammation is the most commonly known type of inflammation that occurs whenever we have an infected wound or other injuries. It is also the kind of inflammation that we experience when we have a tooth infection and swollen gums.
When the inflammation continues to linger for a long time, it becomes chronic inflammation. The body will send more white blood cells to fight bacteria in the infected area. Our body interprets chronic inflammation as a constant attack on our body and may allow the white blood cells to start attacking the nearby healthy cells.
Patients can develop chronic inflammation in the mouth through gum disease. Gum disease or periodontitis is a chronic inflammatory disease due to the disease-causing bacteria found in plaque or tartar in the gum line.
How inflammation in the mouth affects your body
Either chronic or acute inflammation in the mouth can impair your immune health. Your body will be busy fighting off the infection and the inflammation reduces your body’s resistance to other viruses.
In worse cases, the bacteria may get to your bloodstream and cause inflammation in other parts of your body. If you developed oral diseases like gum disease and experience chronic inflammation, you become more susceptible to other inflammatory diseases, such as:
- Heart disease
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Alzheimer’s disease
Oral health problems that cause inflammation
Our oral cavity is the entry point of bacteria in attacking our body. Without good oral hygiene, the bacteria can damage our teeth or cause our gums to swell and work their way to the blood vessels to get into the bloodstream. The following dental conditions can cause inflammation and impair the immune system:
- Severe tooth decay
- Tooth root infection
- Periodontal disease
- Complication from previous dental work
- Infection after tooth extraction
Maintain a healthy mouth to boost your overall health
Don’t neglect your oral health in your pursuit of a healthy life because a healthy mouth reflects a healthy body. Your immune health links your overall health and oral health, and any problems with either of them can affect the other. Let Dr. Taj discuss the crucial role of oral care in your overall well-being.
Maintain good oral health by flossing, brushing your teeth with fluoride toothpaste, and visiting your dentist twice a year. Early prevention and detection of dental conditions can save you from the perils of tooth loss and life-threatening conditions like oral cancer.
Schedule an appointment today and be one step ahead of the inflammatory connection between dental conditions and your overall health.