Your mouth is able to tell you more about your entire body than you might think, as oral and overall health are connected. While certain conditions can be detected through symptoms associated with the mouth, your dentist is in a unique position to help you with your overall health, starting with monitoring your blood pressure.
Here are three reasons why it is valuable for your dentist to take your blood pressure:
You See Your Dentist Frequently
Most people visit the dentist for cleanings twice a year and only visit the doctor for a physical once a year, although everyone is different and could require more visits depending on health needs. This time at the dentist is valuable for assessing your overall health, and simply by taking blood pressure you are being screened for hypertension and other medical concerns, like diabetes, associated with it. While a dental hygienist or dentist can’t diagnose you, they can refer you to see your medical professional.
You Think You’re Healthy
A study done by the Journal of The American Dental Association found that patients who are unaware of their cardiovascular health benefit from regular screenings done at regular dental visits. People who think they are healthy visit their physician less often, and therefore miss important health screenings such as blood pressure monitoring. Regular screenings at dental visits could detect cardiovascular risk factors.
Your Dentist Can Manage Potential Complications
Cardiovascular disease can put you at risk for medical complications, some of which may occur during a dental visit if proper precautions are not taken. Situations that cause stress, such as a dental visit for some, increases your blood pressure. People with hypertension should monitor their blood pressure before a stressful event to avoid an increase in heart rate and blood pressure.
There is a systemic connection between your oral health and overall health, and your dentist can help detect more than 120 diseases through an oral exam. The dentist is a great resource for your health.