What your teeth say about your Health

Humans are one of the few mammals that show their teeth when they are happy.  And the health of your teeth can say a lot about the health of the rest of your body.  Take an extreme situation:  tooth decay. Look in someone’s mouth and if you see unhealthy teeth, you can bet they have other health issues.  A perfect example is someone who’s addicted to methamphetamines.  Over time “meth mouth” happens. Look at the body of someone addicted to meth; you’ll see the damage the chemicals have done to the entire body.

Dentists and hygienists can tell a lot about your stress just by looking at your teeth.  There’s a strong correlation between flat teeth and stress.  People who are under a lot of stress often grind their teeth or clench their jaw.  It’s why dentists ask if you suffer from headaches – the two go hand-in-hand!

Teeth that crack can point to acid-reflux.  Constant open sores in the mouth may point to oral cancer.  Inflamed gums might indicate heart disease and diabetes.  A recent study by the Journal of Sexual Medicine discovered that men in their 30s who had periodontal disease were three times likelier to suffer from erectile dysfunction.

Dry mouth is very common.  Many people think that it’s just something that’s isolated to their mouth. The reality can be much worse.  Chronic dry mouth can point to an autoimmune disease and that’s something nobody should mess around with.

Your teeth can tell you a lot about what’s happening with the rest of your body.  They’re not a perfect diagnostic tool so don’t try to self-diagnose.  But they can give your dentist insight that could save your life.  We often take our teeth and tongue for granted.  Dentists use their senses (looking, listening, smelling) to determine the health of your mouth.  These basic activities can save you an immense amount of pain and suffering.  Talk to your dentist about your major health that exist outside your mouth.  Why?   Dentists generally see you more than any other medical professional.  Regular visits can help your dentist catch something minor before it turns major.  Dentists take great notes, do great “charting” and are in a position to see if something is an abnormality that should resolve on its own or is a pattern that needs immediate attention.  Oral care isn’t just about clean teeth, it’s about a healthy body.

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