Due to the latest world health crises regarding Covid-19 and its repercussions there has been an increased Public awareness regarding healthy living and all matters health in general. The healthier and stronger we are as human beings the better our bodies will resist viral, bacterial and fungal Infections.
This is an opportune moment to increase public awareness about the relation of oral health and systemic health and how the two are inseparable. Because the mouth is the gateway to the rest of the body and an integral part of the body.
There is abundant evidence in scientific literature about how poor oral health may cause severe health problems which can be debilitating and even fatal.
The following are some examples of how disease may spread from the mouth to the body. Abundant cases have linked the increased chance of heart attacks or strokes in people who have lots of tartar on the teeth because of not having a regular dental cleaning, or due to poor oral hygiene, not knowing how to floss and brush properly.
Gum disease also known as periodontal disease can be responsible for diseases such as diabetes, heart disease such as Endocarditis and most recently scientists have found a link between patients who have Alzheimer’s disease and gum disease. The same bacteria that has been found in patients with gum disease has been identified in the brains of patients with Alzheimers.
Another serious threat that chronic infections of the mouth may cause is Bacteremia or Sepsis which may be fatal in some cases. There have been innumerable cases of people suffering from bacteremia whose origin has not been identified by doctors treating these patients. If physicians focus more checking the oral health of these patients there will certainly be various cases linking patients with oral disease processes such as gum disease, chronic local infections around teeth needing root canal therapies or oral cancer lesions which are easy to go undetected, especially if people are not going for routine dental Check ups or dentists are not performing a careful oral exam during these six month checkups.
Our responsibility as dentists and health care providers is to educate and inform the public to take better care of their oral health to reduce the cases of morbidity and mortalities originating from the mouth.
In general most doctors and people are less focused on the possibility of systemic diseases originating from the mouth. Instead the focus is more on the cause of these body diseases starting from other causes and sources.
The health of our immune system is directly related to our oral and corporal health. Once people understand this and take preventive measures to maintain a better overall health this will reduce the risks and incidences of bacterial, viral and fungal Infections.
By going for routine annual or biannual dental and medical Checkups the overall health of our society will improve. In effect we will be protecting ourselves better from Covid-19 and many other diseases including autoimmune diseases as well as the above mentioned.
The basic pillars of health and well being include regular exercise, a healthy diet, meditation and good sleep habits.
This is the reason why countries like Sweden whose population have a better overall health compared to other countries like the U.S or Brasil have had far less fatalities from the Covid-19 crisis.
As a people we have to learn from each other and share our knowledge to improve our global health and well being.