what your dentist can tell about your oral health

What your Dentist can tell from your Oral Health

What your Dentist can tell from your Oral HealthPoway and Rancho Bernardo, CA

Your dentist does more than just manage the care of your teeth and mouth. In fact, your dentist is a key component of your overall pursuit of good health. An experienced and expertly trained dentist in Poway can detect many serious health problems from warning signs that develop in your teeth and mouth.

Do you know what a systemic disease is? This is defined as any ailment that affects the entire body. The flu, for example, is a systemic disease. Some systemic diseases are chronic and manifest with oral symptoms such as swollen gums, mouth ulcers, dry mouth, and other gum issues. Examples of chronic diseases that develop oral symptoms include diabetes, leukemia, certain oral cancers, pancreatic cancer, kidney disease, and heart disease.

Individuals in the “baby boomer” generation—defined as those between the age of 51 and 69—have a particularly high vulnerability to these chronic, systemic diseases: heart disease, osteoporosis, and diabetes. This vulnerability increases with age. Did you know that bad breath and bleeding gums can be warning signs of diabetes? Likewise, experiencing soreness or pain in your jaw could be a harbinger of an oncoming heart attack. Meanwhile, dental X-rays can provide evidence of bone loss, which occurs during osteoporosis. At Smiles by Dr. Cook, your local uses digital X-ray technology, which produces clearer, more precise images while emitting a mere fraction of radiation as compared to traditional X-ray machines.

You can stay on top of your health by receiving regular care from your dentist. Your dentist often can be the first medical professional to provide early diagnosis of a systemic health problem since many individuals visit their dentist once every six months as compared to their regular physician, whom they may see just once per year for a physical.

This is just one reason why every individual can benefit from receiving regular dental examinations. The American Dental Association recommends a dental checkup once every six months—or twice per year. This can identify any developments that may signal other potential health problems. A thorough professional examination by your experienced local Poway dentist also can identify nutrition problems, hygiene issues, improper jaw alignment, and other oral and overall health problems.

Remember, you and your medical providers work as a team to maintain your health. Do your part and assist your dentist by providing as detailed a medical history as possible while also making him or her aware of any developments with your overall health—no matter how unrelated they may seem to your oral health.

As always, prevention is your best defense against oral health issues. Brush your teeth twice daily, for at least two to three minutes at a time, using a fluoridated toothpaste; just look for the ADA seal. Also floss daily, removing plaque from locations in your mouth that your toothbrush will not reach.

You also can help maintain your oral health and overall health by eating a healthy, well-balanced diet full of various nutrients, refraining from using tobacco in any form, and limiting your consumption of alcohol.

Choosing the right dentist is a big decision—not just for your oral health but your overall well-being. To schedule an appointment, please call (858) 673-0141 or contact Smiles by Dr. Cook today. We welcome patients of Carmel Mountain, Poway, and Rancho Bernardo, California.