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Oral health and overall health

By Team Pearlii3 min read
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When it comes to dental health, most of us have a similar way of dealing with it - stubbornly avoiding it until the pain kicks in. We’re talking ‘not even Panadol works anymore' pain! 

Oral health is like the neglected step-child begging for attention with little to no luck. We often treat oral health and overall health as two separate conversations. But studies suggest the two are closely linked; they are a part of the same body after all!

Here are some health problems related to poor oral health: 

Dementia & Alzheimer's

Researchers at the University of Bergen have found a clear link between gum disease and Alzheimer's. They have found DNA-based proof that the bacteria causing gingivitis can move from the mouth to the brain. Here it produces a protein that destroys nerve cells in the brain, which in turn leads to dementia and ultimately, Alzheimer's.


The first signs of diabetes can be spotted in the mouth. Some commonly observed symptoms include gum disease, gum abscesses, fungal infections (such as thrush),  and mouth ulcers. Like all infections, gum inflammation can cause your blood sugar to rise making diabetes even harder to control. Paying attention to your oral health can help in early detection and better management of diabetes. 

Paying attention to your oral health can help in early detection and better management of diabetes.

Respiratory diseases

Our mouth is not too far from our respiratory tract and lungs. Due to its proximity, the bacteria from infected teeth and swollen gums can reach our respiratory system through the air we breathe or through the bloodstream. Once there, it can lead to respiratory infections, pneumonia, acute bronchitis, and even COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease).

Pregnancy complications

A mother's health is connected to the health of her unborn baby and that includes oral health too! Bacteria from gums can enter the bloodstream and travel to the uterus. Here it triggers the production of chemicals that are suspected to induce premature labour. Remember, a mother with poor oral health is very likely to pass on damaging bacteria to her newborn.

Overall wellbeing

Our smile is one of the ways we connect with others. Poor oral health leads to conditions like bad breath and overall bad teeth which directly affects our smile. This takes a toll on a person's self-esteem, confidence and overall ability to socialise. It also affects communication skills, participation at school and overall social development in kids.

Your oral health gives a sneak-peek into your general health. Taking care of your oral health goes a long way in reducing the risk of more serious health problems. A consistent oral health routine including brushing with a bamboo or electric toothbrush and using dental floss can be the first steps into avoiding these issues.

Start a Challenge to improve your oral health today!

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