Valentine’s Day comes around just once a year, and for some, that’s the only time they start thinking about their kissability ratio, and hopefully their Oral Health!
According to the CDC only 61.7% of adults between the ages of 18-64 went to the dentist in 2013! And 27.4% in this age range have untreated decay ~ which can be an indicator of poor oral health! While 61% may not look too bad on paper, it hits closer to home when you realize 4 out of every 10 people you meet likely have no routine dental check-ups. Here’s why it matters . . . .
There is an increasing body of evidence that indicates the link between Oral Health & Heart Health.
Recent studies have shown that compromised oral health, combined with other health risk factors, may be indicators of heart disease and higher risk of stroke. Diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and atherosclerosis are also potentially linked in studies to poor oral health! These studies not withstanding, we know that poor oral health left unchecked, can result in extreme gum disease (Periodontal Disease) which can ultimately lead to bone loss and loss of teeth. It should also be noted that there are medical conditions which worsen oral health and thereby complicate treatment. However, with good patient-doctor communication, patients should be armed with knowledge and know their options so they can better choose health and thereby reduce the risk of complications.
The key to avoid all of these pitfalls is to catch it early!
Signs that a person may be suffering from poor oral health are bad breath (Halitosis) caused by bacteria remaining in the mouth; gingivitis and periodontitis (gum & bone diseases) where oral bacterial infection has gotten out of control; and gum recession, to name a few. Good home care (which includes flossing, not just proper brushing), and regular dental hygiene visits are essential to avoiding these problems and ensuring not only the longevity of your teeth and smile, but also – as seen above – your overall health. [Studies also show an increase in preterm births among mothers with poor oral health, so oral health affects more than just the individual in the case of pregnancy.]
A lot of the articles & reports on oral health today fault youth, and/or a lack of dental insurance as the main reasons for a low percentage of the population seeking good dental care and oral health; and statistics seem to back this up. Although a good percentage of our patients carry dental insurance, we still have patients seek us out to pursue oral health on their own because they value their overall health. At Amherst Village Dental, we pride ourselves on getting our patients to health, so that they are no longer in need of Dental Insurance, but have only to maintain good home-care habits and visit us twice a year for Oral Hygiene Care! This is the ideal, and should be for every oral healthcare provider ~ to get America to Health! ~ so have a Healthy Valentine’s Day, from all of us at Amherst Village Dental