The Systemic Connection

In the last few years there has been an advance in knowledge on the connection between the health of the mouth and the health of the body. We are committed to each of our patients’ health and well-being and are committed to achieving and maintaining a healthy mouth in order to live a healthy life.

Research has found that the oral–systemic connection is one that should be taken seriously. There are many areas of the body that can be affected by poor oral health and dental disease. Here are some of the facts that are important to be aware of:

The Link Between The Mouth and Heart Disease

When disease is present in the mouth, there is a direct path to the bloodstream which passes through the heart.

This direct relation from the mouth to the heart has been linked to Coronary Artery Disease.
Research has shown that treatment of dental disease – specifically gum treatment (also called periodontal treatment) has the ability to improve the condition of the arteries in the heart, therefore alleviating some health risks.

The Link Between The Mouth and Diabetes

When diabetes exists and is uncontrolled, there is a direct correlation to a slowed healing process and the risk of infection goes up.

Properly controlled diabetes is extremely important, healthy blood sugar levels promote health and healing, whereas uncontrolled blood sugar levels (specifically uncontrolled type 2 diabetes patients) have been found to be more likely to develop gum and periodontal disease.

Studies have shown that keeping the mouth healthy and free from disease improves diabetic patients’ blood sugar levels. Furthermore, if gum and periodontal disease exists, studies have shown that with periodontal treatment, a healthier body and healthy blood sugar levels exist.

The Link Between The Mouth and Osteoporosis

The medication that manages osteoporosis often includes bisphosphonate drugs. This type of medication has been linked to the development of osteonecrosis of the jaw.

It is important when taking this type of medication to stay very regular with dental cleaning and visits. When the gums, bone, and teeth are kept healthy, the risk of large dental treatment needed goes down, therefore the risk of any procedure that could cause a jaw fracture goes down considerably.

We recommend that if the treatment of Osteoporosis includes a prescription of a bisphosphonate drug by your medical doctor, regular dental exams and cleanings should be preformed as a prevention routine.

The Link Between The Mouth and Arthritis

Patients suffering from Arthritis have been shown to be more likely to develop gum and periodontal disease, as well as be prone to losing teeth.

This can be controlled with regular dental exams and cleanings. By catching the development of disease forming in the mouth at an early stage, we can take the proper preventative and early treatment precautions in order to maintain dental health.

The Link Between The Mouth and Cancer

When the mouth is exposed to outside factors like smoking, alcohol, and sun exposure there is an increased risk of dental disease and oral cancer.

Oral cancer starts small and often goes un-noticed until it is further along in the growth process resulting in a poor prognosis. Identifying the signs and symptoms early can help avoid disfiguring surgeries and can prolong your life. We have a dental scope that allows us to catch oral cancer at the earliest stage which allows for a much better prognosis.

Providing our patients with the best care available to our goal, we are able to do this with Dr. Kerbs' expertise and his knowledge that he passes on to his team and his patients. We care about each one of our patients’ health and well being and look forward to serving each and every one of them.

Visit us if you are a resident of San Diego, San Marcos, Encinitas, Escondido or Rancho Bernardo.