The majority of Americans hold a common and dangerous misconception regarding oral health; they believe that the health of the mouth does not have a correlation to overall physical and emotional wellness. The truth is that your oral health has a direct and dramatic impact on the health of your body and mind. This doesn’t just mean your teeth, either; it also includes your gums. If your gums are threatened by gum disease, then your body becomes threatened as well.
How Do We Define Gum Disease?
Your gums are meant to protect and support your teeth the same way that your skin is meant to protect and support your muscles and bones. When poor oral habits allow bacteria, food particles, and other debris to invade the small spaces between your teeth and worth their way into your gums, they fester and trigger inflammation and infection in the gums. Over time, if those issues aren’t treated, they are likely to progress into gum disease. The first stage of gum disease, called gingivitis, can be reversed with strategic oral care and regular dental checkups, but the more advanced stage of gum disease called periodontitis is more difficult to resolve. Periodontitis occurs when the gums pull away from the teeth, bone and ligaments in the mouth begin to break down, and teeth fall out. [Read more…]