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The Relationship Between A Healthy Heart And A Healthy Mouth



Our heart health is something we should always be thinking about with heart disease being the number one killer of men and women in North America. There are lots of things we can do to promote heart health and prevent heart disease, starting with our oral health.

Relationship Between A Healthy Heart And A Healthy Mouth

Studies show there is a link between gum disease and heart disease. There are, however, many similar risk factors for the two conditions, including smoking, diabetes, and a poor diet. Either way, taking care of your oral health is a great step towards taking care of your heart and overall health.

Like anything, prevention is far better than treatment. Work on developing healthy habits and an excellent oral health routine. Some things you can work on to prevent disease, or manage it, include:

  • Brush and floss regularly: Plaque and bacteria buildup in the mouth can lead to gum disease, and have other, negative oral health effects. Studies have shown a correlation between gum and heart disease; therefore, taking care of one truly means taking care of the other! You should aim to brush at least twice daily and floss daily.
  • Diet: A healthy diet rich in fibre and nutrients is great for your heart and your mouth. Try to increase your vegetable intake and balance it with a diet rich in healthy fats and proteins. The more you can avoid sugary, sodium-filled, and starchy foods, the better. These are terrible both for your teeth and your heart. Your diet can’t always be perfect, but as long as you enjoy less healthy foods in moderation, you’ll be doing the right thing for your health. Additionally, be sure to drink lots of water to stay hydrated and keep your teeth healthy.
  • Avoid vices: Cigarettes and other tobacco products are all very detrimental to your oral and heart health. Quitting smoking is difficult, but there are many things that can help, such as medication, nicotine gum or patches, and counselling. Speak to your doctor if you’d like help quitting smoking. The effects on your overall health will be huge.

Overall, these are measure you should always be taking towards better, overall health. Caring for your teeth, as well as caring what you put into your body, will translate to a healthier heart and a longer, better life. Another important preventative measure is making sure you visit both your dentist and your doctor regularly for check-ups. If you know heart disease runs in your family, it’s never too early to start taking preventative measures.

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Dr. Stacey Stein
A graduate from the Faculty of Dentistry at the University of Toronto, Dr. Stacy Stein provides personalized care to each patient by explaining the risks and benefits of different treatment options in an honest way, and involves patients in their own care. With a focus on preventative, paediatrics, restorative, prosthodontics, and endodontics, she loves working with patients of all ages.