Pneumonia is a common infection of the lungs. It usually affects older adults or those with immunodeficiencies, though anyone can fall ill. There are a number of ways to prevent developing pneumonia, but there have been discoveries of some seemingly unrelated ways. However, did you know that going to your dentist can help prevent your risk of pneumonia? While your oral health and your respiratory system are usually thought of as entirely separate, research has shown a curious connection between them. We will take a look at the connection between pneumonia prevention and dental hygiene.
The Bacteria of your Mouth
You may be surprised to hear that your body is full of bacteria — both beneficial and harmful alike. Your mouth itself is host to many cultures alone. It has defenses in place to ensure your health and your safety. Saliva can help keep oral bacteria in check, but it is not a failsafe. Bacteria like streptococcus or staphylococcus can invade through your oral cavity and make it to your lungs, causing infection and pneumonia. So what can you do to bolster your body’s defenses from infections? And what other steps can you take to be more aware of pneumonia prevention and dental hygiene?
Dental Visits and Pneumonia
Regular dental visits are one of the most significant ways of retaining optimal oral health. When dental visits are foregone, tooth decay can set in, disrupting oral health care and pneumonia prevention. Bacteria may then have an easier time making their way through your mouth and throat. A study in 2013 showed that in a sample size of almost 30,000 individuals, those who did not follow regular dental visits had an 86 percent higher risk of developing pneumonia than those with regular, twice-yearly appointments. Practicing good dental hygiene in Waukegan, IL and regular dental cleanings can help prevent an infection that could lead to serious issues. The best way to prevent infections is to take care of your teeth. People often forget just how important yet sensitive teeth can be. Do not forget about your dental hygiene before it is too late. Now that you know more about the connection between pneumonia prevention and dental hygiene, there are some things you can do until your next dental visit.
The Mechanisms Behind It All
While brushing and flossing can help control the amount of oral bacteria you have, plaque removal requires a dental cleaning in Waukegan, IL to truly combat. With proper dental care, the amount of oral bacteria present can be limited to a safe degree — which, in turn, limits the amount that may aspirate into your lungs and cause infection. In addition to your teeth, gum disease can play a very large part in your overall health. Seeking out a gum disease treatment Waukegan, IL can make all the difference in your health.
If you have seen delays in your dental visit schedule, do not hesitate any longer. Protect your oral health, learn about pneumonia prevention and dental hygiene, and make your future brighter with a smile. It is important to not neglect your oral health. Not only is it the first thing many people see, but it can also affect your overall health in ways you may not have thought. Visit our family dentist in Waukegan, IL and contact our office to set up an appointment today.