How important is Oral Hygiene

How Important Is Your Oral Hygiene?

You may be surprised to hear how much the condition of your mouth plays a part in your overall health.  One can affect the other both in negative and positive ways. It’s important to stay on top of your oral hygiene so that your body benefits as a result.

Avoiding Gum Disease

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is a condition caused by gradual neglect or inadequate oral care. Improper dental care habits (such as not flossing) causes plaque and tartar buildup to cover your teeth and force its way under the gums.  The buildup brings with it bacteria and infection that can enter your bloodstream.

Several conditions like diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and kidney disease have all been linked to the severity of your gum disease.

How Diabetes Affects Your Mouth

Gum disease and diabetes are linked very closely.  First, having diabetes puts you at risk of developing gum disease. Secondly, having gum disease and being a diabetic makes it harder to control your insulin levels. The infection in the gums may cause insulin resistance, which throws your blood sugar off balance. Improving your oral health is a great place to start.

Cardiovascular Disease

Studies have shown that gum inflammation and infections contribute to clogged arteries and blood clots. The bacteria in the mouth enters the bloodstream and causes inflammation within the body. When the bacteria enter the arteries, it leads to the development of atherosclerotic plaque – putting you at a higher risk of having a possible heart attack or stroke.

Preterm Birth

Low birth weights in infants and preterm deliveries in pregnant women have been linked to severe gum disease. It is believed that the toxins that are released by oral bacteria make their way to the placenta through the mother’s bloodstream, affecting the growth and development of the unborn child.

In order to avoid preterm birth, and keep gum disease away, pregnant women should stay on top of their oral care. Visit their dentist regularly for cleanings and checkups.


Smoking, or using any form of tobacco, weakens the immune system and makes it harder to fight off certain infections. Including gum infections like periodontal disease. Therefore, smokers have a higher chance of developing gum disease, as well as having delayed healing once the gum treatment has been completed.

Tobacco users are also at risk for cancers of the mouth and throat, as well as oral fungal infections, and diabetic problems.

The heavier of a smoker you are, the greater your chance is of developing these issues.  So quit smoking, or at least try to cut back.

Getting the Professional Dental Help You Need

As you can see, your oral hygiene and dental care is strongly linked to your overall wellbeing. It shouldn’t be neglected.  If your oral care routine has been lacking and you need help getting back on track, then call our Raleigh dentist today. The friendly and professional staff of Raleigh Dental Arts can help you gain back control of your oral hygiene and overall health.  Don’t wait any longer – give us a call today!


Tarun Agarwal

Dr. Tarun Agarwal, DDS is considered one of the top dentists in the country. He is a recognized speaker, author, and dental leader. He has been featured on CBS, NBC, ABC, FOX, and News 14 Carolina. Dr. Agarwal has been awarded '40 under 40' Business Leaders by the Triangle Business Journal. He is regularly invited to teach other dentists around the world and recently built a training center within the practice dedicated to sharing his expertise. Most importantly he is a loving husband and dedicated father of three wonderful children. His biggest accolade was being voted 'Best Dad in the World' by 2 of his 3 kids.