Unlocking the Mouth-Body Connection: How Oral Health Affects Overall Wellness

You know it’s essential to maintain optimal oral health, but do you know your mouth health can affect the rest of the body? Multiple studies have shown a clear link between oral health and systematic health. Referred to as the mouth-body connection, this interrelationship is vital for Drs. Bari Posner, Anum Ali and Giancarlo Brezillion when developing holistic treatments.

If you want to learn more about how oral health affects the rest of the body, schedule an appointment with the Dental Associates of Hoboken team.

What is the mouth-body connection?

Much has been said about the mind-body connection, demonstrating how positive emotions contribute to overall good health. However, new studies have explored the mouth-body connection, investigating the link between your oral health and the rest of the body.

Your mouth is the gateway to your body. While bacteria in the mouth shouldn’t ordinarily enter your body system, sometimes they can. When you have gum disease, one of the tell-tale signs is bleeding gums. Of course, bleeding means you have open wounds in your mouth, which can allow harmful bacteria to seep into the bloodstream. With normal blood circulation, these unwanted bacteria can travel to other body parts, causing widespread infection and inflammation.

How does your oral health affect your entire body?

Research has shown a bidirectional relationship between diabetes and gum disease. Uncontrolled oral infection can aggravate diabetes, making it harder to control. Similarly, diabetes lowers the body’s immunity, allowing periodontal disease to progress faster and cause more damage. The two-way relationship between the two conditions shows why optimal oral health is essential.

Besides diabetes, gum disease has been linked to:

  • Heart disease
  • Certain cancer types
  • Osteoporosis
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Premature births
  • Rheumatoid disease

How should I guard the mouth-body connection?

Since your mouth is the window to your body and health, you should throw everything you have to preserve this healthy relationship. With unique expertise in oral pathology, Drs. Posner, Ali and Brezillion recommend the following tips for excellent oral and general health.

  • Brush and floss regularly: You should brush your teeth at least two times daily, preferably in the morning and before retiring to bed. Similarly, you should floss your teeth daily to clean areas missed by the toothbrush. Brushing and flossing help remove built-in plaque and tartar to prevent the build-up of unwanted bacteria. 
  • Eat healthy foods: Consider a dental-friendly diet rich in fruits, veggies, and grains. Limit the intake of sugary and acidic foods. Remember to keep your mouth hydrated to avoid mouth dryness.
  • Quit smoking: Tobacco products contain several harmful chemicals that can cause numerous oral problems, including discoloration, bad breath, gum disease, and oral cancer. We understand quitting tobacco isn’t an easy choice, even for the most health-conscious patients. If you are determined to quit smoking, talk to our doctors today. Together, we’ll help you live a tobacco-free life.
  • Visit a dentist regularly: Visit a dentist at least twice yearly for regular exams and dental cleanings. Routine dental check-ups prevent, detect, and treat gum disease before it advances.

Want to learn more about the mouth-body connection?

If you want to know more about how oral health affects overall body health, call (201) 795-2111 to talk to the Dental Associates of Hoboken team. We will show you how crucial oral health is for your overall well-being and help you increase your efforts to maintain good oral health.