Medical practitioners specialize in one area of the body. Dentistry is thought of as a separate profession. It is easy to forget that one part of the body is connected to every other part. When someone goes to a dentist, more than the condition of teeth is revealed.
Stress Levels Discovered
Stress needs an outlet. Tooth-grinding is an activity carried out when someone is asleep. The result is flatter teeth or an achy jaw.
Teeth grinding and teeth clenching leads to headaches. The muscles go into spasms, which cause headaches. The pain may not stop with a headache but travel from the mouth to neck to upper back.
Nervous people often bite the inside of the mouth. Sometimes the gum is inadvertently bitten. A sore may form. If the sore does not heal within two weeks, it may be an indication of oral cancer. Oral cancer is found in non-smokers and smokers.
A mild skin disease that looks like a white web generally appears first in the mouth. It is often discovered while brushing teeth. It may leave without treatment although at times treatment is required.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Cracked and crumbling teeth may be an indication of GERD, or acid reflux disease, in which stomach acid moves up through the esophagus and into the mouth. Symptoms of the disease include heartburn and a dry mouth.
Medication given for other health problems may lead to swelling gums which grow over the teeth. This makes it difficult to floss and brush teeth. Inadequate cleaning can lead to tooth decay and gum disease. Speak with the physician. The solution may be to change the medication or change the dosage.
Food particles left around improperly cleaned dentures and teeth may be inhaled. Inhaled particles can lead to inflammation and pneumonia. Proper cleaning helps prevent pneumonia.
Abscesses in the mouth may be the first sign of diabetes. A dentist may be the first person to suspect that someone has diabetes.
Heart disease may start in your mouth. Studies are not conclusive, but suggest that gum disease provides a pathway for harmful bacteria to gain entry into the rest of the body. Then, the bacteria help create clots which in turn lead to heart attacks.
Gum disease is linked to premature births. Once again, bacteria that enter the body through periodontal disease can have disastrous effects.
If the teeth are losing density so are the other bones. Treating the rest of the body for bone density also strengthens the teeth.
Maintaining healthy teeth is more than about impressing a potential employer or someone on a date. Good oral hygiene can reduce the risk of major health problems.
Peter Wendt is a writer and researcher who lives in Austin, Texas. He enjoys writing about oral health and other topics related to dentistry. He suggests you click here to learn more about this topic.