Gentle Dental at Oregon Avenue
1419 West Oregon Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19145

The state of one’s teeth and gums may impact overall health of the body

The-state-of-ones-teeth-and-gums-may-impact-overall-health-of-the-body

People should keep their dentists informed of existing medical conditions because many non-dental ailments have been linked to dental health. By including the family dentist in a person’s medical team, the best treatments can be determined that best safeguard someone’s well-being.

For instance, WebMD advises people who have had a heart attack to wait six months before any dentistry is performed on them. Dental practitioners should also be told if patients are taking anticoagulants, which are blood-thinning drugs, because excess bleeding could occur during some procedures. Patients should also check to see if oxygen and nitroglycerin is available at the dentist office in case of an emergency.

For those with high blood pressure, it’s important to ask if the anesthetics used by the dentist contain epinephrine, because that substance could trigger angina, heighten blood pressure levels and affect other heart-related conditions.

According to the American Dental Association (ADA), bacteria that enters the mouth through tooth decay or gum disease can spread throughout the body. In addition to a well-known link to diabetes, dental problems may be an indication of nutritional deficiencies, blood disorders, impaired immunity and bacterial pneumonia.

Periodontitis, the most severe level of gum disease, also increases the risk of a pregnant woman delivering a baby prematurely or a full-term baby that has a low birth weight.

In general, the state of one’s teeth and gums should be considered in tandem with the overall health of the body to ensure that symptoms beyond a simple toothache and the potential of underlying medical concerns aren’t overlooked.

Gums and diabetes
To block dental disease from causing bad health in other parts of the body, ADA states that prevention is key. Good hygiene that includes a minimum of brushing teeth twice and flossing once daily, as well as regular check-ups with a local dentist, is important to maintain good dental health and identify problems in the early stages.

For people who are at the greatest risk of gum disease – at age 40 or older – regular dental exams are especially important for those with diabetes. When gingivitis, the most common form of gum disease, evolves into the more serious periodontitis, there is an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes and exacerbating an existing case.

While this form of diabetes can be regulated with a healthy diet and medication, people with advanced gum disease have to monitor their sugar intake to make sure it doesn’t create unhealthy glucose levels.

In addition, high sugar levels compromise one’s immune system and the ability to fight infections, including oral disease. Conditions that include tooth sensitivity and decay, dry mouth and delayed healing of mouth sores may result.

Another health concern related to dental care is respiratory illness. When high levels of bacteria are allowed to fester in the mouth, they can travel down the throat and into the lungs and create conditions that make breathing difficult. In the worst case scenario, illnesses such as pneumonia may result.

Heart risks
The most hotly debated link between dental problems and overall health remains the one regarding cardiovascular conditions such as clogged arteries, which some researchers believe may worsen from chronic inflammation that begins in the mouth.

In 2012, the American Heart Association (AHA) announced that studies correlating swelled, diseased gums and clogged arteries are inconclusive, as is the link between dental health and heart disease.

However, the AHA also stated that periodontal and heart diseases have similar risk factors such as smoking, age and diabetes. The association continues to advise people to take care of their dental health as part of a heart-healthy regimen, pointing out that regular dental care reduces the risk of infections that may affect the heart.

Read What Our Patients Say
Patient Reviews
Visit went well. Hygienist was nice and fast. The dentist was also nice.
Katrina T.
You consistently give me good care and I’ve had a number of emergency visits that you’ve helped me through.
Mackenzie B.
I always have a good experience when I visit
Shaunta P.
Very gentile and kind
Jayne R.
I never give tens…so nine it is
Brandi G.
My appointment was on a Saturday and even though it was, I still feel like the whole practice was courteous of my time. The male dental assistant that originally got me settled and put the topical […]
Jennifer R.
Usually hate going to the dentist. My old dentist use to tell me to fight through the pain and other things when I had to get procedures done so I ended up gaining a distrust in dentist but my […]
Amber S.
I have nothing bad to say about this place. Everyone was friendly and I felt completely comfortable. Haven’t gone to the dentist in awhile and the worse part was just the anticipation of getting […]
Similarity T.
I had a great experience at my appointment, the dentist was indeed gental.
Robert D.
My dentist was able to take my wisdom tooth out without pain. Definitely wpuld recommend him.
Samatha M.
Service is awesome
Kristian M.
1. The professionalism in the office 2. The dental hygienist is excellent 3. The Dentist was very kind
Paula C.
Is clean and nice staff and fast
Daisy S.
I received very good customer service etc
Louise W.
Staff is always polite sand friendly. The dentist takes his time and shows much compassion for his patients
Lynette W.
My experience was wonderful.
Angela S.
Great doctor and staff Made me feel comfortable
Josh F.
The explanation I received for the services I requested made sense to me.
Robert D.
The staff is friendly and courteous. The service is outstanding.
Daniel B.
Office staff is very friendly
Naeem S.
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Office Hours
  • Monday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Tuesday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Wednesday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Thursday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Friday 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
  • Saturday Closed
  • Sunday Closed
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  • Phone: (215) 310-5817
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