The Surprising Dangers of Poor Dental Hygiene

October 19, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — drmattson @ 8:01 pm

Woman with good oral health in Owings Mills smilingYou may think oral healthcare is important for your smile. And, while you are correct, your dental hygiene can also have an impact on the rest of your body. In fact, recent studies have shown a direct link between your oral and overall health. Certain dental issues like cavities and gum disease can put your overall wellbeing at risk. Read on to learn about some of the most common problems that poor dental hygiene can cause.

Cardiovascular Disease

Poor oral health can put you at higher risk of having a heart attack. If you have unchecked gum disease, the bacteria that infects your gums can eventually get in your bloodstream, which causes plaque to build up and harden in your arteries. This is called atherosclerosis, and it can lead to blood flow problems and blockages, increasing the likelihood of problems like heart attacks or strokes. Thankfully, gum disease can be easily prevented with routine brushing, flossing, and dental visits.


Shockingly, poor dental health can even affect your brain. Substances that are released when there is infection in the gums can kill brain cells and even lead to memory loss. Studies have shown that dementia and Alzheimer’s can result from gum disease when the infectious bacteria spreads into your blood stream or nerve channels.


Diabetics are already more susceptible to infections, however gum disease can make their condition more difficult to control. An infection in the gums can impact blood sugar levels, which worsens diabetic symptoms. However, good oral hygiene can prevent complications with diabetes.

Pregnancy Complications

Hormonal changes that occur while pregnant can cause women to develop oral infections more easily than normal. This is an issue because any infection that happens during pregnancy can cause complications. In fact, gingivitis can lead to higher risks of premature birth and low birth weight in infants. Contact your dentist in Owings Mills if you notice common signs of gum disease like bleeding or sensitivity.

Erectile Dysfunction

Studies show that chronic gum disease can cause erectile dysfunction, or at least a higher risk. The same bacteria that inflames the gums can get in the bloodstream, inflaming blood vessels in the process. This makes it more difficult for blood to flow to the genitals, also making it more difficult to get erections.

Who knew that regular problems like gum disease and tooth decay could have such a negative impact on the rest of your body? Practice a good dental hygiene routine at home to avoid these serious health issues with a smile!

Meet the Dentist

Dr. Monica M. Mattson has decades of dental experience, which is why she truly understands the influence your oral health can have on the rest of your body. She provides thorough checkups and cleanings to prevent and detect issues like gum disease before they get serious. If you have any questions, she can be reached through her website or by phone at (443) 394-2273.