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What is Dental Hygiene and How Can It Prevent Disease in the Body?

Good dental hygiene is of paramount importance for good health. Medical research shows that the benefits of maintaining strong teeth and gums extend beyond your mouth and into your overall physical well-being. In Los Angeles, a dazzling smile can lift spirits and brighten the day, a healthy mouth can go even further to ensuring your overall good health. By maintaining your oral hygiene, you’re not only doing yourself a favor, you’re doing it in one of the easiest ways possible, long before the need for medical tests, invasive surgery, extensive therapy, or complicated prescriptions are required.

You already know that regular brushing and flossing helps prevent cavities and keeps your breath smelling fresh and clean. Your parents, teachers and dentists reinforced these basics, and now the medical community in Los Angeles and elsewhere strengthens the case for good dental hygiene. Science says a healthy mouth is a leading indicator of overall physical condition.

Listen to what one of LA’s best dentists has to say about how you can insure your teeth and gums stay healthy and preserve your good physical health:

The path between your teeth, your gums, and your heart may not be immediately apparent, but evidence shows the importance of this relationship. According to a recent article published by The New York Times, having a healthy mouth can be critically important for improving overall body health. Besides the obvious threat that oral disease has to teeth, gums and the ability to chew food well, there are many chronic and degenerative diseases within the body that can be enhanced by an unhealthy mouth.

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There’s no shame in the occasional cavity or tender gums, but you should also know that bleeding gums mask a risk. Those broken blood vessels, as small as they are, provide an entry point for bacteria. Once in your bloodstream, the bacteria encounter platelets, which encourage clotting when you get a cut. In the mouth, these clots partially block the blood flow back to the heart and increase the risk of heart attack. Though aggressive antibiotic therapy can be used to treat this condition, medication has become less effective. In the absence of prescriptive aids, the experts point back to the same building blocks you learned as a child: brush and floss regularly. Your heart will thank you.

We all hear stories about seemingly healthy people who are felled by a sudden heart attack or a surprising diagnosis of heart disease, even in the body-conscious communities of Los Angeles. They don’t show the usual signs such as obesity or high cholesterol, and they may not be smokers or members of other high-risk groups. Specialists who’ve studied the signs of cardiovascular disease may have made a breakthrough in explaining how these otherwise hale and hearty individuals are susceptible to such ailments. These doctors and researchers have observed a condition in which blood flow is restricted, due to the buildup of material inside the arteries. This is known as atherosclerosis, and though the results aren’t yet definitive, it may be the link between oral health and heart health.

Researchers have theorized that proteins from bacteria — including those that enter the bloodstream from bleeding gums — encourage atherosclerosis and aid its progress. The investigations focused on the role of heat shock proteins, which can come from humans or bacteria. This double origin may prevent the immune system from differentiating between the source of the intrusive pathogens, and the body may rebel against itself. In such an event, the white blood cells can clog the arteries, ultimately resulting in atherosclerosis.

This is a new development, with room for further research, in the fight against heart disease. But until the rest of the evidence comes in, it doesn’t hurt to tend to your oral hygiene. At worst, you save your smile. At best, you save your heart.

How do you ensure that you are doing all the right things to preserve your good health? Do the things mentioned in the video and go to the best Los Angeles dentist you can find…

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