May
11

How your dental hygiene affects your heart and health

Posted by Fawzia Husain

How your dental hygiene affects your heart and health

Since we were kids, dentists have been telling us to brush our teeth three times a day and to floss regularly. Although all of us know how important it is to follow a proper dental hygiene regimen, few of us really follow through with this advice…

According to the 201 Crest and Oral-B Great Canadian Smile Survey, a staggering 68% of people disregard the advice dentists give them. The problem is that poor dental hygiene doesn’t only lead to yellow teeth and bad breath – it can also lead to heart disease. Even more surprisingly, doctors are able to predict heart disease by simply peering into your mouth and checking out your teeth!

Dental hygiene and heart disease

There are a number of risk factors, like high cholesterol, that a doctor can check to predict heart disease. Dental problems, similarly, can also predict heart disease – possibly even more accurately than traditional risk factors, suggests a study in journal Circulation.

People who don’t brush and floss regularly (and effectively) run the risk of plaque bacteria building in their mouths and turning to stubborn tartar. Your mouth and teeth is a point of entry to your blood stream, so this tartar is similar to having a persistent infection that can seep into your bloodstream.

How your teeth can predict pre-diabetes

According to a Columbia University study, doctors were able to positively identify patients with pre-diabetes 73% of the time by simply checking out a patient’s deep gum pockets and missing teeth. Pre-diabetes was later confirmed with blood tests in these patients.

People with diabetes often find it even more challenging to prevent and fight gum diseases. These diseases, such as gingivitis, can lead to a hike in blood sugar levels and have an effect on your body’s natural metabolic rate.

As you can see, it’s very important to take care of your teeth. Besides regular brushing and flossing, visit your dentist for professional clean and solid dental hygiene advice. Contact Dr. Husain to find out more about dental treatments.

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