Round Lake Beach 847-546-5550 2 E Rollins Rd, Suite 202, Round Lake Beach, IL 60073

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Breast Cancer and Oral Health Issues

A woman in a light pink T-shirt frames a pink breast cancer ribbon that is pinned to her chest with her hands.

Oral Health and Your Overall Health

It’s no secret that your oral health can affect your general health, and individuals with periodontal disease, missing teeth, untreated tooth decay, poor oral hygiene, and other dental issues are at higher risk for various illnesses and conditions. For example, mothers with periodontal disease are more likely to go into premature labor than mothers with healthy gum tissue.

Periodontal disease has also been linked to a heightened risk of heart disease, diabetes complications, and other health issues in men and women. Knowing this, it’s not surprising to learn that breast cancer has been linked to poor dental health, as well.

There are numerous studies that indicate individuals with poor dental health are at a higher risk for breast cancer. Additionally, in one study conducted by the Karolinska Institutet and Helsinki University, results indicated that the presence of dental plaque could be linked to higher mortality rates in cancer patients (with various types of cancers).

Unfortunately, despite the advancements in medicine and cancer treatments, breast cancer is the second most common type of cancer in women in the U.S., according to the American Cancer Society. Therefore, protecting your oral health in an effort to lessen any possible risk of developing breast cancer is just one more reason to take care of your smile.

How to Protect Your Teeth

Protecting your oral health sounds simple enough, right? Visit the dentist for teeth cleanings and check-ups every six months, brush and floss every day, replace your toothbrush regularly, etc. However, for many people, caring for their teeth is not an easy process. Individuals who are prone to cavities, have gum disease, orthodontic issues, or exceptionally busy lifestyles can find it difficult to maintain good oral health.

Below are some steps you can take to care for your teeth and gum health, including some informative tips you may not already follow.

  • Fight Dry Mouth – Dry mouth, or low saliva production, can create an environment that allows plaque-causing bacteria to thrive. Drink plenty of water, limit your caffeine intake, and if you’re taking medication that dries out your mouth, possibly talk to your doctor about ways to reduce this side effect.

  • Floss Every Day – Most people brush their teeth twice a day, but few people floss as often. Flossing your teeth is essential to eliminating food particles and plaque that like to gather in hard to reach areas of your mouth, such as between teeth.

  • Take Care of Your Nose – If you’re constantly blowing your nose due to allergies or struggling to take in air through your nose, you may breathe through your mouth or even sleep with your mouth open. This can contribute to dry mouth and lead to plaque buildup.

  • Visit Your Dentist in Round Lake Beach for Regular Check-Ups – Don’t skip your dental exams or teeth cleanings, since preventative care can have a huge impact on the health of your teeth.

  • Eat a Tooth Healthy Diet – Avoiding certain foods that are damaging to teeth, and instead eating a diet rich in vitamins and minerals that are good for your smile will benefit your oral health long term.

Contact Us

If you’re struggling with your dental health and are concerned it could impact your general health down the road, contact the team at Reilly & Siegel Family Dental today. Through preventative care, dental restorations, and oral hygiene instruction, our dedicated team of professionals will help you protect your smile, and your general well-being.

Reach out to us online or call (847) 546-5550 to schedule an appointment.

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