When most of us think about our dental health, we think about our teeth, but our gums are also an important part of dental health. That’s why when you visit the dentist for an exam, they’ll examine and x-ray your teeth for signs of cavities, and they’ll also measure your gums for signs of inflammation which is a symptom of gum disease. Let’s talk about 5 reasons to keep your gums healthy.
1. Keep Your Heart Healthy
Gum disease has been linked to an increase in levels of inflammation throughout the body, specifically in relation to the heart. Studies have shown that more advanced stages of gum disease can raise the risk of heart disease and stroke.
2. Keep Your Lungs Healthy
Healthy gums are also important for healthy lungs. Gum disease has also been shown to have a correlation with an increased risk of pneumonia and other respiratory tract infections, too, likely due to an increased exposure to bacteria when breathing through the mouth.
3. Keep Your Mind Healthy
Keeping your gums healthy can also benefit your mental health. Studies suggest that the more you focus on self-care, such as caring for your whole body which includes your teeth and gums, the more likely you are to experience higher levels of confidence and lower rates of anxiety and depression.
4. Keep Your Smile Healthy
One of the most visible and also important reasons to keep your gums healthy is to keep your smile healthy. Not only is your smile often the first thing people notice about you, but it is an integral part of how you relate to people throughout both professional and personal relationships. A healthy smile has been linked to higher levels of self-esteem and social interaction.
5. Keep Your Whole Body Healthy
Last but not least of the reasons to keep your gums healthy is to ensure that your body gets the nutrients it needs. When your gums aren’t healthy, it can cause discomfort, damage or dental loss, which can make it more difficult and less enjoyable to eat healthy foods. Keeping your gums healthy can keep your whole body healthy.
When to See a Dentist
If you’ve noticed possible signs of gum disease, such as redness, swelling, tenderness, bleeding when you floss, or increased sensitivity when eating, talk to your dentist as soon as possible about what you can do to improve your gum health. It’s often as simple as brushing or flossing, but your dentist may also recommend a deep cleaning or prescribe you with a special mouthwash to give you a head start on fighting bacteria.
It’s also important to see your dentist regularly for an exam to catch early signs of gum disease that many people often miss, so if it’s been more than 6 months since your last visit, it’s the perfect time to make an appointment. Your gum health is important, so don’t ignore any symptoms of gum disease, see a dentist at the first sign!
Call our Waco, Harker Heights or Burleson dental office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.