Good oral hygiene habits, avoiding risk factors and having a regular dental check-up from early in life can help maintain optimal oral health into old age.
World Oral Health Day is celebrated globally every year on March 20 to highlight the importance of keeping your mouth healthy whether you are young or old. And this year, Ellis Dental in St. Louis, MO is using this day to highlight the importance of good oral health.
What is oral health? Oral health means the health of the mouth. A healthy mouth allows you to speak, smile, smell, taste, touch, chew, swallow and convey a range of emotions with confidence and without pain, discomfort and disease. No matter what your age – 5, 25, 65 or 85 years – oral health is vital to your general health and well-being.
Oral health problems such as periodontal disease can be linked to other health issues like diabetes, heart disease, stroke, pre-term birth, osteoporosis. Obstructive sleep apnea (lack of getting proper amounts of oxygen while sleeping) is linked with High Blood pressure and heart health.
- Diabetes uncontrolled can lead to gum disease. Gum disease can make it harder to control blood sugar levels.
- Some people with diabetes have dry mouth and this lack of saliva can lead to cavities.
- People with gum disease are twice as likely to have a heart disease and are at a higher risk of having a stroke
- Osteoporosis is linked to bone loss in the jaw, which can lead to tooth loss and a lowered ability to fight bacteria that cause gum disease.
- People that snore, have high blood pressure, or daytime sleepiness should have a sleep study done. Dr. Ellis is certified to administer home sleep test and make dental appliance to open your airway for mild to moderate sleep apnea.
- Gum inflammation gingivitis or periodontal disease can cause pre term birth.