Proper Dental Care Helps You Live Longer

You may not be aware of it but flossing your teeth is one of the best and easiest ways to keep your immune system early on. A lot of people make the mistake of believing that tooth and gum care are just a subject of vanity. But that is not entirely true. Naturally, none of us would like to lose teeth due to cavity or disease, and nothing gives away your age clearly than a pair of dentures. Dental disease and tooth loss not only make us look and feel older, they in fact make us older.

Cavities can lead to

the need for dentures at an earlier age, but they do not appear to make a difference on your total health or longevity. What really touches on our rate of aging is the presence of gum disease (gingivitis) or diseases that ruin the underlying jaw bone (periodontal diseases). Reports point that the presence of periodontal disease, a disease most common in individuals with tooth loss, literally affects longevity. They are connected to elevated rates of cardiovascular disease and strokes, and also to an increase in mortality from other causes, like infections. Conversely, the lack of periodontal disease makes you at least 3 years younger than the average person.

The surprising truth is that simply flossing your teeth each day can in fact make your arteries younger. The plausible reason is that flossing helps keep your immune system young by keeping you from gum and periodontal infections. For instance, men under 50 who have advanced periodontal disease are twice more likely to die prematurely and three times more likely to die from heart disease compared to those who have healthy teeth and gums.

There is one theory that states that the same bacteria that cause periodontal disease also activate an immune response that causes inflammation of the arteries. As a matter of


fact, a strain of bacteria normally found in tooth plaque has also been discovered in the fatty deposits that can clog the arteries. Reports have established that periodontal disease leads to a higher white blood cell count and an increase in C-reactive protein, both indicators that the immune system is under elevated stress.

Inflammation of the arteries induces swelling of the artery walls. This constricts the arteries and cuts down blood flow. Swelling also makes the blood flow to become turbulent. Turbulent blood flow makes potholes more likely to form inside the walls of the arteries, and these potholes offer places where lipids and white blood cells can seep into the wall of the artery. The resulting buildup of lipid deposits along the artery walls (plaque) slims down the diameter of the blood vessel and blood flow even more. All of these effects promote inflammation at the tip of the plaque, and clotting at that inflammatory focus, and resulting cardiovascular disease. To fight this, brush your teeth using fluoride toothpaste particularly after eating. If you can't brush after a meal, chew sugarless gum. When you brush, be sure to brush your tongue to eliminate bacteria there. The best method in brushing your teeth is to brush at an angle into your gums. Brush around two minutes every time. Some of the at-home ultrasonic cleaners prevent gum disease and clean your teeth faster. Aside from this routine, seeing a dental professional periodically appears to be the best and most important actions you can take to avoid periodontal disease.

 

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