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Mouth Can Give Clues to Other Health Problems

We know that gum disease is linked to many conditions affecting the body such as diabetes, heart disease and Alzheimer’s. But there are also conditions that may show early clues in the health of your teeth and gums – sometimes before other symptoms appear. Here are a few that science has proven:

Tooth Loss and Osteoporosis. The disease that weakens the bones in the rest of your body also weakens your jaw bone which can cause tooth loss.

Pale Gums could mean Anemia. When you have anemia your body is short on red blood cells or the red blood cells aren’t able to carry enough oxygen. People with anemia may have a sore, pale mouth, feel fatigued, weak and irritable or depressed. Gum tissue should be healthy and pink, not pale and definitely not red or puffy.

Damaged tooth enamel could mean bulimia. Many times a dentist is the first person to notice the signs of this eating disorder. The stomach acid from frequent purging erodes the enamel on the back of the teeth. People with bulimia may also have a chronic sore throat.

Oral thrush/candida infections may be a sign of diabetes or HIV infection. Some medicines can also damage the immune system allowing candida to thrive in the mouth. Signs include white lesions on the tongue or inner cheeks. The lesions may be painful. Diabetics who have poor control of their blood sugar levels may have candida infections because of the high amounts of sugar secreted in their saliva.

Kidney disease and tooth loss. While scientists don’t understand the link, it has been shown that adults without teeth may be more likely to have chronic kidney disease that those people who still have their teeth. As with many conditions linked to oral health, researchers feel that chronic inflammation from gum disease may be the culprit.

Please contact our Columbus area office today at 614-476-6696 to schedule your appointment. Your good health, from head to toe, can start with a healthy smile.