How oral health affects your overall health

How oral health affects your overall health

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Most dental diseases such as tooth decay, gum disease, and infections are avoidable with general dental care, which includes regular dental check-ups and professional teeth cleanings. In addition, many people ignore simple home oral care routines.

Read on and you'll learn how oral health affects your overall health.

Oral problems affect nutrition

Millions of Australians miss out the important foods they need to eat which may result in nutrient deficiency. The body doesn't obtain the right number of vitamins, minerals, and macronutrients to function properly.

Children and the older populations are the most vulnerable groups who encounter nutrition problems as they may be fussy eaters or have difficulty expressing themselves and movement and mobility issues.

That's why caregivers and parents should assess their oral health too as much as they evaluate their physical health to ensure everything is okay.

It is necessary to find the right dentist who can attend to your dental problems and needs. You can find your preferred dentist based on location, services, expertise, and costs online in dedicated dental finder platforms, such as AirSmile.

Dental emergencies affect quality of life

Seventy per cent of dental-related emergency visits could have been avoided with early professional dental intervention. As a result, dental emergencies drastically affect a person's quality of life because of pain and suffering.

Here are some of the examples of dental emergencies that can affect a person's overall quality of life:

  • Toothache: Most people experience tooth pain at some point in their lives. Toothache isn't a minor problem because it affects the whole body psychologically. When your pain suddenly strikes and becomes more severe, you need to see the dentist immediately. A cold compress may temporarily alleviate discomfort.
  • Chips or cracks: When something hits the mouth or when you bite a hard object, your teeth can become chipped or cracked, which may warrant an emergency dental visit. In addition, if you clench or grind your teeth, your teeth become more susceptible to cracking and chipping. Ignoring dental interventions can lead to permanent damage. Dental surgery can be used to repair broken and chipped teeth, such as composite bonding, crowns, root canals, veneers, and dental implants.
  • Loose or knocked out teeth: This dental emergency involves the tooth coming out of the alveolar. It's important to bite down on your tooth gently to hold it in the socket to preserve it or to find any missing tooth in the place of incident and store in a glass of milk for possible restoration. Neglecting to protect your teeth can lead to permanent tooth loss, which can affect your smile and overall facial appearance.

Good oral health reduces risk of oral cancer

Oral cancer is prevalent worldwide, and 180,000 people die of it every year. About 900 people with intraoral cancer are diagnosed in Australia every year. Hence, early detection through regular dental check-ups can save lives. People who miss dental appointments reduce their chances of oral cancer screening, predisposing them to this life-threatening medical condition.

Dental problems affect growth and development

It's not unheard of to prioritise children's healthcare. However, 1 in 4 children aged 5 to 10 years old have untreated tooth decay, which can affect their growth and development.

Oral problems affect speech development. Many children with speech delays tend to also have oral health problems. Children with these problems have difficulty in coordinating the tongue and jaw, and creating speech sounds. These children might experience feeding problems too.

Dental health problems affect mental health

A person's smile tells a lot. Hiding your smile could mean devalued self-worth and self-confidence. For this reason, it's imperative to tackle dental problems early. Otherwise, they can ruin a person's self-image and mental wellbeing.

According to a study, dental disorders such as malocclusion, tooth loss and untreated tooth decay can affect an adolescent's aesthetic perception and psycho-social behaviour, which affect their self-esteem.

Periodontal or gum disease also affects the mood, causing stress, anxiety, loneliness, and depression. Chronic and untreated toothache causes severe pain and suffering. Hence, vulnerable groups, especially the elderly population, must be under constant monitoring.


It's important to connect patients to the right dentists who can provide dental care services. Good oral health promotes better overall health.

Poor oral health can result in pain, low self-confidence, and poor overall health. Hence, it's crucial to educate the people on the importance of proper hygiene and regular dental visits as a way to prevent major health issues.