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Smile! You May Be Killing Yourself

We all understand that poor dental care can lead to cavities, as well as many more oral issues, but poor dental care can lead to much more serious issues than an unattractive smile. The mouth is the meeting point between the immune system, alimentary canal, and the outside world. A mouth that is poorly keep introduces unhealthy bacteria to the blood stream every day. The Mayo Clinic highlighted some major areas of concern:

  • Cardiovascular disease:  The bacteria from inflammation of the gums and periodontal disease can enter your bloodstream "Some research suggests that the more bacteria you have from gum-disease, the thicker your carotid arteries may be. If they're too thick, blood can't flow to your brain, leading to a stroke." The hardening of the arteries is called atherosclerosis which causes plaque to build up making it harder for your heart to pump blood throughout your body leading to another devastating outcome, a heart attack. Bacteria can also cause inflammation and infection  around the inner lining of the heart also known as endocarditis.  

  • Dementia: A study from University of Central Lancashire School of Medicine and Dentistry suggests that poor health and gum disease may be linked to Alzheimer's disease and dementia.Gingivitis causing bacteria invades the never channels entering the bloodstream leading to the development of this disease. 

  • Other conditions: Conditions that might be linked to oral health include eating disorders, rheumatoid arthritis, head and neck cancers, pneumonia, and Sjogren's syndrome. Sjogren's syndrome is an immune system disorder that causes dry mouth. 

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