Bloomsburg, Danville, and Lewisburg, PA
Our mouths have a lot to do with our overall health, more than you may know. Millions of people live with active tooth decay, gum disease or mouth pain. In fact, tooth decay is the number one disease among children. Recent research links untreated oral issues with an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, cognitive decline, diabetes, and other serious health ailments.
Ironically, many health issues can have oral health consequences that you should not ignore. Here are some oral issues that could be signaling something more serious is going on in your body.
Contrary to what some may believe, dry mouth is not a normal part of aging. However, it can be a side effect of more than 400 different medications, including those most popularly used to treat high blood pressure, high cholesterol, anxiety, depression, and pain.
However, if you are always dealing with dry mouth and are not taking medications, be sure to bring this to the attention of your dentist. Your dentist may recommend saliva producing sprays or mouth rinses, as well as fluoride varnish application on your teeth to protect against tooth decay.
Many oral issues can result in mouth pain, which can make eating healthy foods difficult. Likewise, inadequate nutrition can affect one’s oral health and contribute to tooth decay, gum disease, and more. This is especially the case for the elderly. So, if you are a caregiver or notice that a loved one experiences trouble eating, it may not be their appetite after all, but their teeth instead.
Covering your mouth when you smile or talk
Missing teeth can cause embarrassment and social isolation. If you find that your missing teeth or oral pain make you shy away from social gatherings, you are increasing your risk of an earlier death by 45%, and a 59% greater risk of functional decline.
Loose teeth or gums that bleed
Several chronic health conditions such as diabetes, stroke, cognitive decline, and heart disease are linked to gum disease, loose teeth, and bleeding gums. For people with diabetes, stabilizing glucose levels is a must. Research recommends that diabetics treat active gum disease and maintain good oral health to help stabilize blood sugar levels. If you already have one of these chronic diseases, neglecting your teeth and gums will only make the disease worse.
Sores or irritations in the mouth that won’t heal
According to the American Cancer Society, nearly 50,000 people are diagnosed with oral cancer or throat cancer annually, with the average age of diagnosis around 62 years of age.
Symptoms of oral or throat cancers may include open sores or irritations that do not heal within a couple of weeks. Usually, by this point, the cancer is already in advanced stages, which is why routine dental exams and checkups that include oral cancer screenings are important for your health.
Maintaining a regimen of oral hygiene, as well as regularly visiting the dentist, can help minimize your risk of developing certain chronic diseases or cancers.
To schedule a consultation, contact Hamilton Dental Care today by calling (570) 387-0533.
Hamilton Dental Care is here to serve patients in the communities of Bloomsburg, Danville, and Lewisburg, PA.