Have you experienced a toothache? Bleeding gums? Bad breath? Then you could have poor dental health. But this can also have negative effects on the health of your entire body.
Is it possible to die from having bad teeth? An abscessed tooth or infected gums won’t kill you, but poor dental health can cause deadly diseases.
Consider your mouth as the gateway to your entire body. Over time, bacteria can form if you have cavities, decayed teeth, or infected gums. You are more likely to get sick if this bacteria goes untreated for a long time. Afterward, it can harm any organ in your body. Your mouth has a direct relationship with the health of your entire body.
Still not convinced? You have to check it out here.
Good dental and oral health is crucial for a healthy cardiovascular system.
Heart attacks are more likely if you have dental disease. Poor brushing and flossing practices increase the risk of heart disease in patients with bleeding gums.
Bacteria like to stick to platelets because they are the best places to do it. This opens up the possibility for blood clots and interference with blood flow to the heart. And then? A heart attack. Sometimes it doesn’t happen, but an untreated gum infection can turn into a serious heart problem. Why risk it?
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States.
One in four adults has untreated cavities.
Gum disease affects almost 50% of adults aged 30 and over (65 million people).
They define it as a “silent tooth decay epidemic.”
The link between dental health and Alzheimer’s
Oral health affects your brain too!
You are more prone to cavities and infections if you don’t brush and floss. Poor dental health can even lead to Alzheimer’s disease.
Gum infections have an impact on dementia and memory loss. These bacteria are linked to Alzheimer’s. In this way, people with swollen gums show failure in cognitive signals nine times more than those with healthy gums.
Good dental health is essential to control (and prevent) diabetes. People with diabetes are at higher risk of developing infected gums.
If you ignore an infection, your blood sugar levels will rise dramatically, making your diabetes even more difficult to control. However, you are more likely to develop poor oral health if you don’t control your diabetes.
The link between dental health with cancer
Pancreatic cancer develops in 64% of people with a history of gum disease.
There is a 75% increased risk of liver cancer if there is poor oral health.
The HPV virus is also related to poor oral hygiene.
The dangers of smoking have been well-known for decades. However, untreated cavities and gum disease are also to blame for other types of cancer. Many cancerous tumors contain an enzyme called “proteinase” similar to “Treponema denticola chymotrypsin” (Td-CTLP). And gum disease is usually caused by this enzyme lodged in the mouth. They activate enzymes that cancer cells use to invade healthy cells. More research is still required.
To cure arthritis, Hippocrates (father of modern western medicine) advised pulling teeth. It is something that is still being investigated! You are more likely to have arthritis if you have gum disease. Furthermore, patients with RA have a higher incidence of gum disease than patients without this condition.
Inflammation is a common factor in both diseases. Inflammation throughout the body can be caused by the oral bacteria of gingivitis.
What are the dangers of an untreated dental infection?
Dental infections can be very serious and life-threatening. Without treatment, the condition will likely worsen and you will get a series of complications external to the mouth.
See your dentist or health professional as soon as possible if you experience:
- Severe or throbbing toothache
- Swelling in the face or cheeks
- Swollen lymph nodes under the jaw
- Difficulty breathing
- Waves of foul-smelling salty fluid in the mouth when the abscess ruptures
There are thousands of hospitalizations and deaths worldwide due to serious bacterial infections caused by dental disease. However, this dental problem is rare.
Tooth infections can cause complications
Here are some possible complications of dental abscesses:
- Need to extract the affected tooth. In case you have a dental abscess again or if your tooth received serious damage.
- Infections of the small cavities inside the skull (sinusitis). Viral infections commonly cause sinusitis. This can occur behind the cheekbones as a result of a tooth abscess. You’ll get a stuffy nose, sinus headache, and bad breath, plus green or yellowish discharge from your nose.
- Osteomyelitis is an infection of the bone. If the bacteria have an abscess to spread and cause inflammation, this condition occurs. Once the infection has spread through the blood, it can affect any bone in your body. In addition to fever and nausea, osteomyelitis can cause severe pain in the affected bone.
- Thrombosis in the cavernous sinus. It occurs when blood clots form in the hollow space under the brain (cavernous sinus). It is life-threatening. There is an infection on the face or skull that spreads to the cavernous sinuses and causes a blood clot.
- Ludwig’s angina. It occurs on the floor of the mouth and is a skin infection. In severe cases, the infection can cause difficulty breathing, due to obstruction of the airways. It is also potentially deadly. Symptoms include swelling, pain when moving the tongue, fever, and shortness of breath.
Tooth infections can be treated with dental treatment
You can cure the infections with the following treatments. Among the procedures that your dentist can perform are:
- Open and drain the abscess of pus with a small cut. He or she will then wash the area with saline solution.
- Root canal therapy to save your tooth and eliminate the infection. Dentists use drills to remove the infected pulp and drain abscesses. To strengthen the treated teeth, a dental crown is usually applied after root canal therapy.
- If root canal therapy or other procedures don’t save the affected tooth, your dentist will have no choice but to extract it. The abscess must be removed and drained in order to eradicate the infection.
- If there is only an infection, antibiotics may not be prescribed. If the infection reaches nearby teeth, jaws, or other parts of the mouth, your dentist will likely prescribe antibiotics.
Healthy teeth, healthy body: the importance of dental health
It is impossible to completely avoid the disease, but you can certainly minimize its risks.
Brushing your teeth for more than two minutes each time is recommended. This way you will get good dental health.
Dentists recommend using dental floss every day and mouthwash. Don’t forget to visit your dentist twice a year for general checkups.
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