Research seems to indicate that there is a link between heart disease and gum disease (although there is no indication of any causal link). The exact reasons for this are not entirely known but the fact remains that if you have an unhealthy mouth, statistically you are more likely to have an unhealthy heart.
The BBC wrote an article in the health section of their website recently talking about the causes of heart disease, they listed the following statistics:
- heart disease causes around 74,000 deaths each year averaging out at 200 people per day.
- There are an estimated 2.3 million people living in the UK with coronary heart disease.
- About one in six men and one in nine women die from heart disease.
Coronary heart disease is most certainly a killer and with the links between this condition and your oral health it has never been more important to ensure that your gums and teeth remain healthy.
In this short video posted on YouTube, Whoopi Goldberg talks about her own experiences with gum disease and its links with overall body health.
To show you some of the other areas that can be affected by poor oral hygiene take a look at this info graphic.
As you can see the links with respiratory disease, heart disease, diabetes, ulcers, osteoporosis, arthritis and preterm births.
To help keep your teeth as clean as possible here are our top tips for toothbrushing, flossing and mouthwash.
The best technique for toothbrushing
- Brush having a small, energetic circular action or make use of an electric toothbrush.
- Try to brush in a sequential approach beginning using the inside surfaces first because they are probably the most awkward to clean well
- Clean each tooth individually focusing on one tooth at any given time until the brush head through 45° was cleaning the gumline to make sure nowhere is skipped.
- When cleaning the teeth make sure that you brush your gumline adequately and this is where most plaque buildup.
The best technique for flossing
- Start off with a 30 cm length of floss wrapped around the middle finger of each hand and pull it tight. Place the floss between your back teeth by pushing the floss onto the tips of your fingers so that you can reach as far back as you need to.
- Start flossing in a gentle up-and-down motion moving from the gum line up where the teeth meet, then go in a backwards and forwards gentle sawing motion, ensure that you allow the floss to bend around your teeth covering the back of one tooth and the front of the next and dropping the floss down to go underneath the gumline.
Some people may find it difficult to clean their teeth adequately with brushing and flossing alone, the these people the use of the daily mouthwash can help to eliminate food particles between the teeth. The mouthwash can also help to kill any bacteria which could be left behind helping to prevent bad breath.
If the mouthwash you use contains fluoride than it can also help to prevent decay in people prone to recurrent problems.
By keeping your teeth healthy you not only ensure that you keep your teeth for life, which looks best, you also keep your dental fees as low as possible and go some considerable way to ensuring that your whole body remains healthy.