News and Tribune

Lifestyles

August 20, 2013

Dental health can affect overall health

NEW ALBANY —

Our mouths can get us into trouble by not saying anything. 

Our teeth and the inside of our mouths can affect our entire health — and it may not have anything to do with how many calories or fat grams we consume. It’s about properly taking care of our teeth to prevent periodontal disease which can cause gum issues and bone loss.

“As professionals we understand how closely the two [overall health and teeth] are linked. Our job is to educate our patients that they are related,” said Dr. Sara Denzinger-Rowe, who operates Denzinger Family Dentistry at 5404 Charlestown Road in New Albany. “If something is going on in the mouth that is very important.”

Every time a patient comes in for a checkup, Denzinger-Rowe and her partner, Dr. Tracy Guilford, complete a cancer screening and examine the mouth and teeth for not only tooth decay, but for other warning signs of possible health issues.

“Some patients come to us twice a year but don’t see their physicians. We can examine the mouth and then point them in the right direction if we see something,” Guilford said.

One of the main culprits to the health of both teeth and body is periodontal disease. The mouth is full of bacteria which can cause gum issues, plaque and tartar buildup on teeth. There is also a relationship between periodontal disease and heart disease, if there is excessive plaque buildup. Signs of diabetes can also show up in an examination of the mouth according to Denzinger-Rowe.

“We always ask about family history,” she said. “Periodontal disease can raise blood sugar and affects the support of your teeth and overall bone health. It’s a quiet disease and you don’t know something is going on until you develop symptoms.”

Symptoms of gum disease according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research  include bad breath that won’t go away, red or swollen gums, painful chewing, loose or sensitive teeth and receding gums.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Lifestyles
LOCAL MAGAZINES
2013 Photos of the year


Take a look at our most memorable photos from 2013.

SPECIAL CONTENT
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Raw: Fire Engulfs Tower Block in China Ocean Drones Making Waves in Research World Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier Raw: Ferry Captain Received Medical Treatment Hundreds Gather for Denver Pot Rally on Easter Transcript Reveals Confusion in Ferry Evacuation Raw: More Than 100,000 Gather for Easter Sunday Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria
2013 Photos of the year


Take a look at our most memorable photos from 2013.