Your oral health directly impacts your overall health, which is why seeing a dentist is just as important as seeing your primary care physician. Your dentist can determine if you will come across issues such as gum disease, which may impact your quality of life and even raise your risk for systemic disease in your later years.
Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is an inflammation of the gums due to plaque and bacteria buildup. When plaque isn’t removed, it hardens into tartar and produces toxins that break down the gum tissue, causing them to pull away from your teeth and form pockets that fill with bacteria. Without a solid routine that includes brushing twice a day, flossing daily and visiting a dentist for an exam and cleaning twice annually, this condition can increase your risk for heart disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease.
Studies show those who develop gum disease early in life are four times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. The type of bacteria that cause gum disease can destroy brain neurons, a hallmark feature of Alzheimer’s. Your dentist can help target gum disease and may increase your cleanings throughout the year to prevent plaque and bacteria buildup, lowering your risk of disease.
Find a dentist near you and schedule an appointment today to live well and smile more.