Why Experts Say Your Mouth Is a Window to Your Overall Health
They say your eyes are the window to your soul, but have you ever heard that your mouth is a window to your health? Research has shown that a person's oral health can significantly affect their overall health, and provide signs that there might be health issues in other areas of the body.
Those pesky oral health issues that you've been ignoring could actually be pointing to a bigger problem. The good news? If good health starts with the mouth, maintaining good oral health is pretty straightforward once you develop a straightforward routine. From the stylishly packaged, minty fresh range of Mavis Toothpaste to the A Tongue Cleaner Changed My Life Ayurvedic Copper Tongue Cleaner, there are a variety of products that help maintain oral health. But what should you look out for in your oral health?
Read on to find out the symptoms of poor oral health and what each could mean, plus some ways to maintain good oral health and support your overall health in the process.
Bad breath can certainly knock your confidence about—and can make elevator rides pretty uncomfortable. But beyond the ick factor, bad breath may be a sign of larger imbalances. Bad breath, or even just a bad taste in your mouth, could be a sign of gastric reflux producing excess acid or poor gut health with the imbalance in your gut bugs producing nasty smells. While bad breath may seem trivial and most cases are improved with better oral hygiene, it's definitely worth discussing with your GP or dentist to rule everything out. In the meantime, regular brushing, drinking plenty of water and some handy breath mints can give you confidence in close encounters. Using a tongue cleaner, can also be a lifesaver for bad breath, proven to remove more bacteria from the tongue than brushing alone.
Loose teeth can be quite alarming and should definitely signal time to make a beeline to the dentist. While loose teeth could be a sign of gum disease, it could also be a sign of osteoporosis. Women are particularly prone to osteoporosis, which leads to weak bones, including the bones in your jaw, which can cause teeth to become a little wobbly. Researchers have found the worse the woman's osteoporosis, the more teeth she is likely to lose, with many women unaware of the risks.
Sensitivity to temperature
Sensitive teeth are often passed off as normal with sufferers learning to avoid their triggers, like a cool Calippo on a hot summer's day. Worse than denying you these indulgences, sensitive teeth can be a sign of dental decay or could be caused by poor brushing practices. It's definitely worth mentioning to your dentist and getting them to assess your brushing technique. Other causes of sensitivity could be teeth clenching or grinding, which usually happens completely subconsciously during sleep, mostly due to stress.
A dry mouth happens when you don't produce enough saliva and can happen for a number of reasons including yeast infections, stress and numerous chronic health conditions. It's worth pinpointing the trigger for dry mouth to ensure any medical causes are dealt with. For many people, it's a symptom they'll have to learn to live with but there are plenty of ways to manage it, including drinking plenty of water and trying to breathe through the nose. It's extra-important for people with dry mouth to maintain their oral hygiene as the dryness can cause bacteria to overgrow and lead to infection. Caffeine and alcohol can make your mouth extra dry, so don't go overboard and make sure to top up with extra glasses of water.
How to keep your mouth healthy
The good news is that keeping your mouth healthy isn't complicated—there are simple things to do that are beneficial for everyone.
Here are some handy tips to keep in mind:
- Brush your teeth twice a day—morning and night, and after meals as well if bad breath is bothering you. This one might seem obvious but recent data shows only 53% of us are brushing twice a day!
- Use mouthwash and floss regularly as well to complement your brushing and get rid of any food trapped between your teeth or around your mouth.
- Clean your tongue—this gets rid of bacteria build up on the tongue and can be especially effective to deal with morning-breath after the bacteria have built up overnight.
- Your dentist is your best friend—make sure to get regular check-ups with your dentist and mention anything out of sorts to them.
- Stay hydrated—it sounds basic but it's easy to forget. A hydrated mouth is a healthy mouth as it boosts your saliva production which washes away food particles and bacteria.
- Keep your toothbrush fresh—you should be replacing your toothbrush every three months or so. Next time you buy a new one, set a reminder in your phone to buy your next one in another 3 months time.
Always seek the guidance of your doctor or other qualified health professional with any questions you may have regarding your health or a medical condition.