Good oral hygiene doesn’t protect just your teeth. What happens in your mouth affects almost every other part of the body. When health professionals look in your mouth, they may see symptoms of serious conditions like heart disease, diabetes and chronic infection.
The Compounding Pharmacy of America helps patients improve the health of their entire body – including offering specialized medications for oral conditions. Here’s why good oral hygiene is so important to your well-being.
Oral Health Can Be a Red Flag for Disease
Your doctor or dentist can tell a lot about your health from looking in your mouth or taking a saliva sample.
The Academy of General Dentistry says 90 percent of systemic diseases produce symptoms you can see in the mouth.
It not just what you see, either. Your spit can tell a lot about your health.
Here are just a few things your doctor can tell from your saliva:
- Stress Levels – Cortisol levels in saliva indicate your level of stress.
- Osteoporosis – Bone-specific proteins help measure bone loss.
- Cancer – Saliva indicates the presence of some forms of cancer.
- Drug Use – If a drug is in your system, it shows up.
- HIV or AIDS – Saliva tests are replacing blood testing for some infectious diseases.
Saliva protects your body from infection via viruses and bacteria. It contains enzymes that break down bacteria and proteins that fight fungus. When disease weakens the body’s immune system, patients experience infections of the mouth such as oral thrush.
How Poor Oral Health Harms the Body
Health professionals look for toothaches, bleeding gums and bad breath. Mouth sores or infections can also indicate some of these serious underlying health conditions:
Periodontal disease causes swollen, inflamed gums. It can also enter the bloodstream and cause plaque to build up in the arteries.
Plaque buildup can:
- Blocks blood flow
- Increase your risk of heart attack and stroke
- Cause endocarditis – an often-fatal infection of the heart lining
Infected gums release substances that are toxic to brain cells. Bacteria from gingivitis has been cited as a contributing factor in cases of Alzheimer’s disease.
Though poor oral hygiene won’t cause diabetes, it does make it harder to treat. Gum disease makes blood sugar harder to control, so people with poor oral health have a higher chance of developing diabetes.
Tobacco can cause cancer of the mouth and throat. People who have poor oral health are also more likely to develop pancreatic, blood or kidney cancer.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a genetic disease, but poor oral health can make this already painful disease even worse, since gum disease causes inflammation. People with gingivitis are 4 times more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis.
Periodontal disease and other oral infections weaken immune systems and affect the kidneys, increasing the risk of disease.
Find Oral Health Solutions at The Compounding Pharmacy of America
The Compounding Pharmacy of America provides a wide range of dental services and compounded dental pharmacy solutions to make it easy to prevent oral-related health issues. Our custom products – from fluoride treatments to teeth-whitening gels – promote strong oral hygiene. Visit our Dental Services page to see more about potential solutions we have for you!
Chief Operating Officer, The Compounding Pharmacy of America
Matthew Poteet, Pharm.D. graduated with Honors from Lee University with a Bachelors of Science in Biological Science. After his undergraduate training, he completed the Doctor of Pharmacy program at Mercer University Southern School of Pharmacy, graduating in 2004. Dr. Poteet has spent much of his pharmacy career on staff at two of the most prestigious academic teaching hospitals in the Southeast; Emory University in Atlanta and Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville. At these institutions he received extensive experience and training in sterile products compounding.
He returned home to East Tennessee in 2010, where he has held the position of Pharmacy Director at two sterile products pharmacies in Knoxville. Matthew lives in Knoxville with his wife, Chris. Dr. Poteet is Tennessee’s first Board Certified Anti-Aging Pharmacist by the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine.