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Relationship Between Oral Health and Systemic Disease

Relationships between oral health and systemic disease!

What are the connections between oral health and systemic diseases?

Though you might not be hearing about it until now, the science has been clear for some time how closely related your oral health is to your whole-body health. Systemic disease continues to rise and detection and prevention is more important now than ever before. 

Diabetes and its relationship with Oral Health

Diabetes puts your patient's bodies at an increased risk for infection.. and that includes infections in the mouth! 95% of people with diabetes ALSO have periodontal disease. Many people who have diabetes or prediabetes have not even been diagnosed with one or the other. Periodontal disease can make balancing blood sugar levels more difficult, which can lead to catastrophic health risks for diabetic patients who aren't being treated properly. All periodontal patients should know their diabetic status and vice versa!

Learn how you can help manage your or your patient's diabetic status here.

Cardiovascular Disease and Periodontal Disease

Check out the AAOSH video or podcast below - "Heart Attacks are Optional!" Periodontal disease is directly linked to artery inflammation. Bacteria from the mouth enters the bloodstream, causing arteries to harden, which in turn increases a patient's risk for stroke or heart attack. 






Periodontal Disease and Inflammation in the Body

Periodontal disease is a chronic inflammatory disease that, at most stages, cannot be cured, but can be treated and managed. When the mouth and teeth are not adequately cared for, bacteria infects the tissue, creating inflamemation in the mouth. Testing is available for dental professionals to help create proper treatment plans.  A dental professional should have the knowledge to properly create a treatment plan to help minimize the damage Periodontal disease will play on your systemic health. 
Read more on forms of periodontal disease and its effects on systemic health here.

Emerging science that links oral health and systemic disease

"The oral cavity is the intersection of medicine and dentistry" - Shawn F. Kane, MD
View the Oral-Systemic Health Section or ADG here

Oral infections have been studied to have drastic and life-altering effects on systemic diseases including hypertension, adverse pregnancies, diabetes, Alzheimer's disease, arthritis, and more. 

The science shows that the current standard of care is not enough to fight the battle of systemic disease. Heart attacks and strokes impact over 1 million American each year, over 37 million Americans (1 in 10), have diabetes, and Periodontal disease affects roughly HALF of all adults. Salivary testing and diagnostics are available to practitioners to detect subclinical diseases. These tools can be used to provide a higher standard of treatment and change the trajectory of your patients lives. 

AAOSH works to educate practitioners from allied health fields to collaborate and change the way we provide care to our communities. Our research-based Core Curriculum provides you tools and education you need to bring your patients to whole-body health. Learn more about Core Curriculum

What is your role in patient health when it comes to oral health and systemic disease?

Start with education and move to ACTION. 

Educate yourself on the connections between oral health and systemic disease, learn to detect and treat subclinical disease, and collaborate with your healthcare community to reach total body health. If you aren't collaborating with medical and dental practitioners, your patients are not getting the best treatment possible! 

Another priority is educating your PATIENTS on the importance of oral health along with the risks that go along with poor oral health. 

If you're looking for resources to spread education to your patients and teams, download the AAOSH Infographic Bundle here.