Dental Health and Your General Well-Being
Denver and Lakewood, Colorado
Just as your general health can affect your teeth, so can your dental health affect the rest of the body. The interaction goes both ways and although causal connections are not all understood or well established, it is clear there is much more connection than people commonly assume. The healthier your mouth is the healthier you can be.
Catching Problems Early
Cosmetic Dentist, Dr. Greenhalgh will be looking at your teeth in a larger context. This is one of the features of cosmetic dentistry as opposed to traditional general dentistry. Cosmetic dentistry does not approach your dental care with an attitude of “What problem are we fixing today?” It is more preventive in nature.
Dr. Greenhalgh always takes the time to examine your entire mouth and bite alignment before determining any course of action. Minor dental problems can often indicate more serious underlying problems. We offer a complete bite analysis separately, if you would like to learn about the early signs of Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD or TMJ).
You might have some of those symptoms without realizing it. Many of them do not at first appear likely to have a dental cause. But why wait until you suffer from severe headaches and other painful TMD symptoms? Please see our page on TMJ Relief for more details.
When you come for your routine check-up, we will also test for gum disease and do an oral cancer check.
Preventing Gum Disease
Daily dental hygiene with regular check-ups and professional cleaning are the way to avoid gum disease. One of the most common ways to let gum disease develop is by skipping a regular cleaning. In Dr. Greenhalgh’s experience, almost all gum disease can be controlled by staying on a regular schedule.
Our hygienists are very concerned that you have a comfortable gum-cleaning appointment and they use many little tricks to maintain your comfort, regardless of the condition of your gums.
The mouth contains millions of bacteria, most of which are harmless. But when you leave bacteria on the teeth too long, they multiply and spread and leave increasing amounts of toxic excretions on the teeth. Their excretions are acidic. These bacteria can inflame the gums and that’s why they bleed. Bleeding gums are not normal or healthy.
These bacteria can also dissolve away the bony support under the gums. This is called periodontal disease and is why older people lose their teeth. Eventually so much bone dissolves away that teeth become loose and must be removed.
If you’ve had disappointing cleanings or if you have strayed from your hygiene schedule, please contact us today to discover a different experience.
Bacteria in the Bloodstream
When the gums bleed, bacteria can spread into the bloodstream and travel anywhere in the body. The gums are full of blood vessels – arteries bringing nutrients to both the gums and each tooth, and veins carrying waste products away.
If you have a healthy immune system, you can probably throw off any potential harm from mouth bacteria in the blood system. But if your immunity is impaired by disease or medical treatments such as cancer medications, bacteria from the mouth can cause infection and inflammation elsewhere in the body.
Other Health Aspects
Please see TMJ/TMD Relief for information on treating the headaches and other symptoms which come with Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD). If you are a snorer, it may be a minor issue, or it may indicate that you also have Sleep Apnea. Please see Sleep Apnea and Snoring for more information. For information on how Dr. Greenhalgh can use our laser to quickly treat gum disease and cold sores, please see Laser Dentistry.
Why Replace a Missing Tooth? Find out.
To schedule a dental health consultation with Dr. Greenhalgh and get all your questions answered clearly, please call or email our cosmetic dentist office today. We serve Denver, Lakewood and all neighboring areas.