Our physical health constitutes many different areas. But they are intertwined in a variety of ways, through physical links and those that are habit-based. People who are more careful, or conscientious, in their oral health are also more likely to exhibit this care throughout their health routine. This link accounts for many patients whose poor oral health is mirrored by similarly poor physical health elsewhere. But this link isn’t only habitual, as some recent research has shown.
A large study in the United States, as outlined in the Journal of the American Cancer Institute, provides a link in to the connection between oral health and cancer risks. In this study, focusing on over 7500 patients, those with very poor dental health – or no teeth at all – were considerably more likely to develop a range of cancers, including those occurring in the lungs, colon, and prostate.
The increased likelihood ran up to 30% over time, even though the study controlled for such habits as cigarette smoking. Long assumed, this is the first inkling that poor oral health is connected in a very real way to your overall health.
The actual reason for this link is open to debate, and is sure to be the study of continued research. Some postulate that more porous gums allow for more ingress from free radicals via the gums. Others have speculated about stress levels, diets intrinsic to poor teeth, or to inflamed gums occupying more of the body’s white blood cells, which would otherwise be employed to fight off potential cancer growths. Time will tell – but in the meantime, protecting your teeth is a fantastic method of aiding your long-term health. Contact your dental clinic in Macquarie Park at North Ryde Macquarie Park Dental, and book your appointment.