Mouth Body Connection
Most people believe their oral cavity health and general medical health to be separate. This could not be further from the truth. They are both undeniably linked. Due to the fact blood is so close to the surface of the soft gum tissue and so close to the lymph nodes located on the underside of the lower jawbone, they can deliver any infection from the mouth to the rest of the body. These can include dangerous bacterial infections and oral cancer. With a definitive link between the mouth and the body, it is even more important to be diligent when doing self-examinations each and every day. If you have questions or concerns, please contact our office so we can provide you with the information. We are located at Periodontal Health Professionals.
Oral Cancer Concerns
While the word cancer does not cause quite the level of fear it once did due to advances in treatment and general understanding, it can still be quite alarming when receiving a diagnosis. Many patients fail to realize how serious oral cancer can be. More frequently they worry about lung, pancreatic, and bone cancer. It is natural to be concerned when finding a discolored area on their gums or tongue, immediately thinking those places might be cancer. While that should be a concern, the vast majority of these prove to not be cancerous. While this may be true, with any type of cancer, early detection is vital.
Other Serious Concerns
One of the most widely diagnosed oral conditions is periodontal disease. With this condition, massive tooth decay leading to tooth loss and bone mass loss can occur. Losing multiple teeth creates a domino effect, leading to even more complications. The remaining teeth will tend to move to the spaces left by the missing teeth. This process needs to be stopped by an oral appliance or surgical procedure.
When teeth shift, the surface of the tooth that contacts the tooth in the opposing jaw changes. This will cause erosion to occur at a much higher rate than normal and can even change the bite motion for the patient creating issues with the TMJ. Problems with the TMJ have been known to change speech patterns and cause hearing problems.
When gum disease sets in and teeth are lost, the remaining teeth will also lose their opposing force when chewing. While this might not seem important it is incredibly so. When teeth lack the opposing force they no longer keep the jawbone strong and supportive. Upper and lower jawbones can be affected by the lack of this natural pressure. Once again, patients may fail to realize that this jawbone deterioration can lead to damaging infections which have been attributed to arthritis, severe respiratory problems, diabetes, and even potentially deadly heart disease.
As simple as it may seem, patients hold the power of prevention in their everyday oral hygiene practices. These include not only brushing and flossing but rinsing with mouthwash and going to see professionals for cleanings and examinations. All of these things when practiced together greatly decrease the chances of getting gum disease and other infections.
Oral health is incredibly important. Contact us to schedule your appointment with our dentist. We are at Periodontal Health Professionals and waiting to examine and evaluate your oral health. Call us at (856) 702-4340 to schedule an office visit.