You probably don’t realize this, but the health of your mouth is directly linked to your overall well-being. A lack of good oral health puts you at risk for other, sometimes serious, health conditions. You can be further exposed to those conditions if you develop gum disease (formally called periodontitis).
To emphasize just how important your oral health is, let’s take a look at some of the issues that may arise if you neglect your mouth’s health.
If you have periodontal disease, you could be at risk for developing respiratory disease. Additional research is needed to confirm exactly how periodontal disease can put people at increased risk for respiratory disease, but we do know that oral infections are associated with increased risk of respiratory infection, like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and pneumonia. These infections develop when the bacteria in the mouth or upper throat are inhaled into the lower respiratory tract. This can be severely dangerous; it can even lead to death.
We’ve known for quite some time that bacteria can affect the heart, which is why we are so concerned about periodontal disease contributing to heart disease. Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection that can increase one’s risk of having a fatal heart attack.
Periodontal disease can also affect pregnancies more than you might realize. If you are pregnant, as well as a woman who suffers from periodontal disease, there is a chance that you could have a premature, low birth-weight baby.
This obviously isn’t a comprehensive list of everything that can happen if you end up with gum disease, but it does give you an idea of how large an impact your oral health has on the rest of your body.
If you fear you’re at risk for gum disease, or already suffer from it and need treatment, contact Dr. Julia Gorelik today to schedule a consultation.