Dentists and doctors have more in common than supplemental schooling and above-average pay. Between oral and overall health, your body works as a system. Oftentimes, one health issue can cross over to both professions. Dentists can detect the early signs of more than 120 diseases through an oral exam. How dentists can help doctors detect a diagnosis:
Diabetes and Gum Disease
Those with the disease are at high risk for developing gum disease. And it’s a two-way street. Gum disease makes it hard to control blood sugar levels, which can compromise overall health. And because symptoms are sometimes subtle, diabetes can go unnoticed for years. The mouth offers clear-cut signals of the disease, and your dentist is trained to spot these warning signs.
Whether you’re diabetic or pre-diabetic, take control of your health. Diabetics with gum disease who receive appropriate dental care are healthier and often experience a reduction in blood glucose levels.
HPV and Oral Cancer
Genital HPV, human papillomavirus, is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States and the world, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It’s estimated that 90% of adults have been exposed to some form of HPV. Every sexually active person is at risk for contracting HPV. And HPV can cause oral cancer.
Your dentist is often your first line of defense when it comes to spotting oral cancer. In fact, dentists check for signs during a routine exam. In addition to practicing safe sex, it’s important to stay on top of your preventive care visits with your doctor AND dentist.
Heart Disease and Gum Disease
Rather than judging gum disease severity through inflammation and bleeding, dentists can now identify specific types of bacteria present in the mouth. This gives them the ability to detect a patient’s probability for heart complications.
Reduce your risk for heart disease! Keep your teeth healthy, exercise regularly, and eat a balanced diet.
A healthy smile can make a positive difference on your overall health. Dentists and doctors may be different, but they both can determine a diagnosis, and make a positive difference in your overall health. For more facts on the importance of oral health, check out our new fact sheet.