Your body works like a well-oiled machine, with each part helping the others to work their best. With that in mind, it makes sense that each facet of your health affects the others. And poor oral health can lead to a myriad of issues beyond cavities and bad breath.
If you’ve never considered your oral health and overall health to be related, you’re not alone. But to lead the best, healthiest life possible, it’s important to learn the importance of dental health.
To learn answers to questions such as “what is oral health?” and “how can I protect it?” just keep reading!
What is Oral Health?
Let’s start with the basics. Oral health is your ability to speak, smile, smell, taste, touch, chew, swallow, and show facial expressions without pain, discomfort, or disease.
It’s often taken for granted but is an essential component of health, both mental and physical, that must be protected.
Why is Oral Health Important?
It’s an unfortunate fact, but billions of people around the world are affected by oral diseases every year. Oral diseases are often common to seniors with dementia. Over 3.5 billion people reported having an oral disease in 2016 alone.
Oral diseases can cause mouth pain and lead to an unsightly smile, but conditions that occur as a result of poor oral health are much more serious. For example, there’s a link between diabetes and oral health, as well as oral health and heart disease.
This is because bacteria growth in your mouth can become so severe that it moves to other areas of your body, causing inflammation and infection.
Steps You Can Take to Protect Your Oral Health
Thankfully, protecting your oral health is simple. Unlike caring for other aspects of your health, practicing good dental health takes only a few minutes a day.
The first, and most important, step is to brush your teeth twice a day for 2 minutes per session. Use fluoride toothpaste or plaque removing dental gel and a soft-bristled brush to prevent inflammation. In addition, you should floss every day, and use mouthwash to finish your routine.
Every three months, replace your toothbrush. Splayed or worn bristles make your toothbrush less effective and can damage your gums.
Twice a year, pay a visit to a dentist local to your area. Regular dental cleanings and checkups are crucial to early intervention and keeping your teeth as healthy as possible.
Last, do what you can to limit food with added sugar and avoid tobacco use. These can wreak havoc on your smile.
Protect Your Health by Taking Care of Your Smile
Practicing proper oral hygiene isn’t complicated. It takes very little effort and time but can be the difference between good health and disease.
Now that you know the answer to the question “what is oral health?”, as well as how to care for your teeth and gums, you can ensure that your oral health doesn’t negatively affect other aspects of your health down the line.
Interested in learning more about improving all aspects of your health? Take a look at our blog!