At Total Health Dental Center, we place your total health first.
Research has shown that dental health is only one component of your overall health — but a very important one.
Our mouths are full of bacteria. Most pose no health risk at all if we follow good dental hygiene practices. Daily brushing and flossing can keep most bacteria from becoming a problem. However, without proper oral hygiene, bacteria can reach levels that might lead to oral infections, such as tooth decay and gum disease— or worse.
Medications, Diet and Disease are also important variables in our dental health as well as our total overall health.
Medications — including decongestants, antihistamines, painkillers, diuretics, and antidepressants — reduce saliva in our mouths. Saliva plays an important role in washing away food particles and neutralizing acids produced by bacteria.
Sound Dietary Choices support strong tooth enamel, healthy gums and help to minimize decay and inflammation in your mouth.
Diseases contribute to problems such as inflammation of the gums and can lead directly to periodontitis — a severe form of gum disease. In addition, certain diseases, such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS, can lower the body’s resistance to infection, making oral health problems even more severe.
How can my teeth impact my Total Health?
Good Question! Each of the following systems of our bodies are affected by our dental health – especially when chronic illness or medical treatment are involved. You can read more about specific Medical Conditions and how important Total Dental Health is to your overall well-being.
Mouth bacteria, Porphyromonas Gingivalis, can enter the brain. This bacteria can trigger an immune system response in the brain that releases excess chemicals than can kill neurons resulting in symptoms of confusion and memory loss. Porphyromonas Gingivalis has been found in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients.
Current studies are underway to determine if Crohn’s Disease, an autoimmune disease affecting the intestine flare-ups can be contributed to mouth bacteria that travels to the lining of the intestine.
Adult onset diabetes also can develop due to an autoimmune response that attacks the pancreatic cells that produce insulin. Studies have shown a correlation of increased diabetes in patients with periodontal (gum) disease. Periodontal disease has been linked to pancreatic cancer. Click here to learn more.
BONES AND SKELETAL SYSTEM
Osteoporosis affects millions of people and potentially causing crippling effects. Through regular dental exams and a panoramic x-ray, that shows all the bone of the jaws, we can actually spot very early development of osteoporosis. This can be achieved even before any medical diagnostic test can detect the presence of osteoporosis. Current medical tests can only diagnose osteoporosis only after the damage has already occurred from.
Ulcers of the stomach not only have been associated with excess stomach acid production but also a bacterial component. Bacteria found in the mouth have also been isolated in stomach ulceration. Reduction of mouth bacteria can potentially help heal stomach ulcers along with reduction or elimination of other causative factors.
Many studies have contributed periodontal disease to coronary heart disease. Mouth bacteria have been cultured from fatty deposits in the heart’s arterial walls. Inflammation occurs in these arteries and decreases the blood flow to the heart.
One of the possible contributing factors in the destruction of the thyroid gland is caused by an auto-immune response. Proper dental care can reduce the bacteria throughout the body thereby reducing the immune system from being in a consistent hyperactive state. This can reduce and slow the body’s immune system attack on organs such as the thyroid.
Dentistry and ear doctors have come together to help patients with outer and middle ear deafness. A device worn in the mouth transmits sound waves through the upper jaw bone to the inner ear allowing sound to be heard. The device is called Soundbite. Total Health Dental Center has helped over a hundred uni-sided deaf patients to hear again.
Bacteria from the mouth has been shown in studies to cross the placenta barrier and enter the developing baby. This has been associated with preterm and low birth weights of babies.
Mouth bacteria have been shown to travel in the entire body’s bloodstream. This causes an inflammatory response which results in the thickening of the arterial and venal walls, constricting the space. This constriction causes an increase in blood pressure readings of patients with poor oral hygiene.
Studies have shown individuals in poor, weakened health are more prone to pneumonia from inhaling bacteria from the mouth infected with periodontal disease. The aging population is becoming more susceptible to this cause and effect.