Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Can having bad teeth cause problems outside of dental issues?"
I went without a dentist visit for a long time and then found out I have a lot of problems with my teeth recently. Is this only bad for my teeth or could bad gums and cavities cause problems with other parts of my body?
It is very important to follow up with a dentist on a regular basis. Plaque or sticky coat of bacteria and food that sits on your teeth and gums can lead to serious tooth decay and gum disease. These problems can lead to tooth loss, in addition to tooth decay. Regular follow up with a dentist can help diagnose these problems early and these issues can also be reversed if caught early on. In addition, a dentist can diagnose whether your dental problems maybe related to your other medical problems. For example, diabetes, osteoporosis, heart disease are often linked to oral health. If you have periodontal disease, or severe gum disease, it is essential to brush and floss on a daily basis and maintain good proper daily oral hygiene. Bad tooth decay and gum disease can lead to infection of the gums and bones, that can be exacerbated in the presence of other medical problems. Depending on your situation, a dental problem may be more serious. Teeth infections if not treated properly can progress to an infection of the bloodstream that may possibly damage the heart and joints. Most people see a dentist for a regular check up every 6 months to 1 year. Special conditions may require that you see a dentist more often. I would definitely advise you to see a dentist more frequently for prevention and treatment.
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