Good Oral Health for your Overall Health

World Oral Health Day World Oral Health Day (WOHD) is observed on 20 March to raise awareness of the importance of good oral health and its significance in safeguarding general health and well-being. Theme for WOHD 2017 is “Live Smart Mouth”.

The date 3/20 was chosen to reflect that:
  • Seniors must have a total of 20 natural teeth at the end of their life to be considered healthy.
  • Children should possess 20 baby teeth
  • Healthy adults must have a total of 32 teeth and 0 dental cavities
  • Expressed on a numerical basis this can be translated as 3/20 hence March 20.

Healthy mouth and Healthy Body

Taking good care of your mouth, teeth and gums does more than help to ensure you have a bright, white smile.
  • People with uncontrolled diabetes often have gum disease. Having diabetes can make you less able to fight off infection, including gum infections that can lead to serious gum disease. Reducing your risk of gingivitis by protecting your oral health may help with blood sugar control if you have been diagnosed with diabetes.
  • With a healthy mouth that’s free of gum disease and cavities, your quality of life is also bound to be better, you can eat properly, sleep better, and concentrate with no aching teeth or mouth infections to distract you. Decayed teeth and gum disease are often associated not only with an unsightly mouth but very bad breath, so bad it can affect your confidence.
  • Cardiovascular problems like heart disease, blockage of blood vessels and strokes are associated with chronic inflammation from gum disease. Maintaining oral health can help protect overall health
  • Skills which are used daily like verbal recollection, cognitive skills and other memory tests shown very poor results with people suffering from gingivitis (swollen, bleeding gums) when compared with healthier gums and mouths. Using an antibacterial mouthwash or toothpaste can help reduce bacteria in the mouth that can cause gingivitis.
  • Research has found an association between gum disease and rheumatoid arthritis, an autoimmune disease that causes inflammation of the joints. Experts say the mechanism of the destruction of connective tissues in both gum disease and rheumatoid arthritis is similar. Eating a balanced diet, seeing your dentist regularly, and good oral hygiene helps reduce your risks of tooth decay and gum disease.
  • Women may experience increased gingivitis during pregnancy. Some research suggests a relationship between gum disease and preterm, low-birth-weight infants. If you’re pregnant, visit your dentist or periodontist as part of your prenatal care.
Here are some tips to help you look after your teeth.
  • Brush at least twice a day. The best time to brush teeth is after meals. Soft bristles are kinder on your gums.

  • Teeth and heart
  • Use fluoridated toothpaste. Fluoride helps to harden tooth enamel and reduces your risk of decay.
  • Tooth brushing should take between two and three minutes.
  • Floss your teeth daily.
  • Limit acidic drinks like soft drinks and fruit juices. Food acids soften tooth material and dissolve the minerals in tooth enamel, causing holes (cavities or caries). In severe cases, teeth may be ‘eaten’ right down to the gum.
  • Limit sugary foods. Bacteria in dental plaque change sugars into acids.
  • Avoid using your teeth for anything other than chewing food. If you use them to crack nuts, remove bottle tops or rip open packaging, you risk chipping or even breaking your teeth.
  • See your dentist for regular check-ups. You should also visit your dentist if you have a dental problem such as a toothache or bleeding gums.