When thinking about overall health, we usually focus on things such as diet and exercise. But did you know that the state of your oral health can be a strong indicator of your overall health and wellness? Good oral health means that you can smile, eat, and speak with confidence and comfort, which in turn means you can enjoy your life to its fullest.  

Understanding the importance of oral health and having a strong oral hygiene practice are essential parts of maintaining a beautiful and healthy smile for years to come. 

What is Oral Hygiene? 

Oral hygiene involves the practice of routinely cleaning your teeth and keeping them free from damage and decay, as well as preventing infections in the mouth and surrounding areas. A strong oral hygiene practice typically includes brushing twice daily for at least 2 minutes each time, flossing once daily, and visiting your dentist regularly for routine checkups and cleanings.   

Oral hygiene is essential for maintaining overall health and wellness. Research has shown that when oral or dental disease is left untreated, the risk of developing adverse health conditions is increased. This is why maintaining good oral health is vital when working towards good general health.  

Reasons Why Good Oral Health is Important 

Oral Health Affects Your Overall Health 

The mouth acts like a door to the internal parts and systems within the body. It can also serve as the place in which early symptoms of systemic diseases can be detected. Some of these diseases, such as diabetes for example, can first appear as lesions in the mouth or other oral health problems such as infected or tender gums.  

Studies have shown that individuals with periodontal disease have an increased risk of developing heart disease. Periodontal disease also increases inflammation in the body, which can also put a strain on the cardiovascular system.  

Some of the other health conditions that are caused by poor oral health are: 

  • Bacterial Pneumonia 
  • Some Forms of Cancer 
  • Infective Endocarditis 
  • Complications during Pregnancy 
  • Low Birth Weight 
  • Sepsis 

Early Detection of Oral Health Conditions & Diseases 

One of the most important reasons to maintain good oral health and strong oral health practice is that they can help detect oral health conditions early. By visiting your dentist twice a year, your dentist has regular opportunities to evaluate and examine the condition of your teeth and mouth, making early detection of differences or symptoms possible.  

Prevention of Tooth Loss 

Tooth loss is among the most common dental issues that both children and adults alike. One of the primary reasons behind the loss of teeth is poor oral health. When plaque is allowed to build up due to poor oral hygiene, severe tooth decay and/or infections in the gum tissue can result. This, in turn, can lead to tooth loss.  

Helps to Develop an Oral Treatment Plan 

Mouth structures and dental conditions can vary widely between individuals. When you see your dentist regularly, you can detect any potential conditions or warning signs, and in collaboration with your dentist, you can create the best treatment plan and preventive methods for your needs. The goal of any oral health treatment plan is to achieve the healthiest mouth and smile possible and maintain good oral health and hygiene.  

Feel Confident with Your Smile 

Good oral health means that you can smile and laugh with confidence. In order to maintain a healthy smile and strong oral hygiene, it is essential to keep your teeth free of plaque and tartar. Healthy gums also contribute to a beautiful smile. Routine flossing and brushing reduce the buildup of plaque. Brushing and flossing alone, however, is not enough to optimize your oral health. Seeing your dentist twice a year for a routine checkup and cleaning ensures that even the hard-to-reach areas of your mouth are clean and healthy.  

 The Bottom Line  

Good oral health is essential to a healthy body. In addition to practicing a strong oral hygiene routine, you can help to maintain the health of your teeth and gums by limiting your consumption of highly sugary food and drinks, using fluoride toothpaste, and doing your best to have a healthy lifestyle in general. If you want to learn more about the importance of oral health or to book your appointment, contact our Guelph Dentist’s office today!