Decades ago, physicians were unlikely to refer a patient to a dentist or gum specialist, if they are suffering from diabetes or heart disease. However, times changed and research revealed that dental health may indicate the state of the rest of your body.
The Link Between the Mouth and the Rest of Your Body
The mouth-body connection is the idea that inflammatory chemicals or bacteria released by certain cells in the gums may enter the bloodstream and affect other organs or tissues. This is not exactly groundbreaking science; in 1900, William Hunter, a British doctor, proposed that focal infections in the gums and teeth caused a disease in another part the body.
Fast-forward to the 21st century and more research linking dental health to ailments such as cancer, heart disease and type 2 diabetes are gaining traction. Inflammation may be the best explaining the connection between the two; chronic swelling is damaging to the cells and the DNA they hold.
The main cause of the inflammation is the formation of plaque on teeth and gums. The bacteria living in it create an acid that damages and erodes enamel and result in cavities. Other kinds of bacteria develop within plaque which may also trigger inflammation in some of the tissues surrounding your teeth.
The strongest connection of the mouth-body argument is between cardiovascular disease and gum health. A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine suggested that deep cleaning gums and teeth resulted in healthier and more elastic arteries six months after.
More studies are underway to determine if there really is a direct link between dental health and other illnesses. However, you must not wait to have toothaches, decay or gum disease treated to avoid being the first person to prove the correlation.
David Madruga is Here to Help
Dr David Madruga Gonzales is a qualified and experienced dentist that provides multiple treatments for patients who have specific dental health problems. The dentist has worked in several practices in the UK for almost a decade. Dr Gonzales received an award from the Oxford Society of Oral Implantology with a Postgraduate Certificate in Comprehensive Oral Implantology and Prosthetics in 2008 along with other credentials since then.
Contact us to learn more about what treatment you need for your condition.