Last month we celebrated National Smile Week (an annual occurrence during the second week of August) and there was plenty of teeth and mouth-related news to honor the celebrations last month, including the development of an oral activity sensor that can track eating and coughing among other things.
Here are some stories that might give you a little more insight to the importance of your dental health and the effects it may have on your overall health.
From Health, if you're not a fan of the semi-annual teeth cleanings, pregnancy will no longer give you a reprieve as ob/gyn experts now consider dental exams and X-rays safe during pregnancy.
The article cites that 35% of all women say they haven’t been to the dentist in the past year. It is important to keep up with oral health because poor dental health can spread and causes problems elsewhere such as heart disease, diabetes, and respiratory illnesses.
Pregnant women face unique dental health issues as the physical changes caused by pregnancy can also cause changes in the mouth and gums. The article cites that 40% of pregnant women have cavities or gum disease. It is particularly prevalent among black women, smokers, and women on public assistance.
That’s why they are now pushing for ob/gyns to talk to pregnant women about the importance of their dental health.
Additionally, another study may be adding Alzheimer’s to the list of conditions that can stem from poor dental health.
Researchers studied the brains of dementia patients and patients without dementia and found a possible link between bacteria associated with gum disease and the patients with dementia and/or Alzheimer’s.
Dental health may not be something we initially think of as an influence on our overall health, but these stories and studies really highlight the importance of looking after your dental health by brushing, flossing, and taking regular trips to the dentist. After all, even though National Smile Week has passed, you can still show off your beautiful smile year round.