The Mouth-Body Connection: More Reasons to Care

The relationship between our oral health and the rest of our body has become big news in recent decades. You may have seen some of the headlines, and they are often disconcerting:

Gum Disease Linked to Rheumatoid Arthritis”
“Gum Disease May Signal Warning for Pancreatic Cancer”
“Gum Disease Linked to COVID-19 Complications”

Indeed, more and more research points to the link between inflammatory gum infections and systemic diseases. And it’s not just rheumatoid arthritis, pancreatic cancer and COVID complications as mentioned above. It’s also the relationship between gum disease and obesity, respiratory diseases, stroke, diabetes, osteoporosis, issues with pregnancy like premature birth and more. Indeed, it seems clear that serious gum disease (periodontitis) may not just wreak havoc with your oral health but can cause issues beyond the mouth and through the body.

Visit Your Dental Practitioner Regularly To Help Avoid Issues

Research is still ongoing, with some thoughts pointing to bacteria from infected gums entering the blood stream and causing inflammation. The American Academy of Periodontics, as another example, points to research that shows that men with gum disease are 49% more like to develop kidney cancer. The organization also says that “research has found that bacteria that grow in the oral cavity can be aspirated into the lungs to cause respiratory diseases such as pneumonia, especially in people with periodontal disease.”

While a firm cause and effect relationship has not been conclusively proven, and, as the American Dental Association notes, “establishing causality remains elusive,” there are too many red flags to ignore. It’s clear that when you take care of your mouth, you are lessening the inflammatory burden on your body.

The Time to Address Gum Disease is NOW

If you’ve been referred by your regular dentist or haven’t seen a dentist in a while and have symptoms like puffy, red or tender gums, it’s not too late to control possible gum disease. The team at South Florida Center for Periodontics & Implant Dentistry can help you get started on a treatment plan to make your mouth healthy again. Call for an appointment now: 561-912-9993. We’d love to help you improve your smile—and, by doing so, your overall health.