Lakewood Dental Texas Dentistry Team Explores the Oral-Systemic Connection

In the past, we often thought of our oral health as separate from the rest of our body’s well-being. However, recent research has proved quite the opposite. Indeed, experts have uncovered a profound link between the health of our smiles and the overall health of our bodies. That’s why our Texas dentistry clinic is here […]

In the past, we often thought of our oral health as separate from the rest of our body’s well-being. However, recent research has proved quite the opposite. Indeed, experts have uncovered a profound link between the health of our smiles and the overall health of our bodies. That’s why our Texas dentistry clinic is here to help with comprehensive general and family dentistry treatments.

At Lakewood Dental Group, we offer numerous preventive, restorative, and cosmetic solutions for patients living in Dallas, TX, and the surrounding areas. With our team, you can feel confident that you’re getting the highest level of care without breaking the bank. Want to see why our patients love us? Schedule an appointment with Dr. Shaun Sigurdson or Dr. Mihir Patel by dialing (214) 827-1885 now!

According to the American Dental Association, maintaining good oral health isn’t just about having a beautiful smile – it’s essential for your systemic well-being.  In this blog, our Texas dentistry clinic delves into the intricate connection between oral health and various systemic issues. Here, we explore some of the most common systemic issues that can arise when we neglect our oral health.

Heart Disease

Heart disease refers to a number of conditions that can affect the cardiovascular system, including:

  • Coronary artery disease
  • Hypertension
  • Peripheral artery disease
  • Cerebrovascular accident (stroke)
  • Myocardial infarction (heart attack)

But, how does our mouth affect our heart?

Well, the link between gum disease (periodontitis) and heart disease has been well-documented. Research suggests that bacteria from the oral cavity can enter the bloodstream through inflamed gums (periodontitis), potentially causing inflammation in the arteries. 

Prolonged cardiovascular inflammation can lead to atherosclerosis (the hardening and narrowing of arteries). Over time, this increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes.


People with diabetes are more likely to develop gum disease. Conversely, people with gum disease are also more likely to develop diabetes. But, how can this be true?

Well, poor oral health can make it harder for patients currently living with diabetes to control their blood sugar levels. This is because the inflammation from gum disease can disrupt insulin sensitivity, making it difficult for the body to regulate blood sugar effectively.

The same principle is true for patients not currently living with diabetes yet. Gum inflammation triggers the body’s immune response, which can alter blood sugar levels. If gum inflammation goes untreated for too long, the change in blood sugar levels eventually leads to lifelong insulin resistance. That’s why frequent visits to our Texas dentistry clinic are so important!

Pregnancy Complications

Let’s be clear – gum disease is an active infection in the gums. This means that people with gum disease are at a higher risk of complications before, during, and after their pregnancies. These complications can include:

  • Trouble conceiving (people with gum disease often take months longer to conceive than those who do not have gum disease)
  • Preterm birth
  • Low birth weight
  • Brain injuries

The inflammation and bacteria associated with poor oral health can trigger an immune response that may contribute to these adverse outcomes. Frequent trips to a Texas dentistry center can help deter pregnancy complications.

High Blood Pressure

As stated above, gum disease can directly affect the cardiovascular system. This means that hypertension (high blood pressure) is a very real threat to patients living with poor oral health. 

Experts suspect that the inflammation from gum disease could contribute to the overall inflammation in the body. In turn, this causes blood pressure dysregulation, eventually causing long-term damage to the heart and vascular system.


The link between oral health and cancer is complex. However, experts have found that poor oral hygiene can increase the risk of certain cancers, especially oral and throat cancers

In most cases, smoking and excessive alcohol consumption are usually to blame. These substances disrupt and damage oral and bodily systems, which can significantly elevate the risk of cancer.

Neurological Issues 

Emerging research indicates a potential connection between gum disease and neurological disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease. The theory is that the bacteria associated with periodontal disease can travel to the brain, triggering inflammation that might contribute to neurodegenerative diseases. Yearly visits to our Texas dentistry center can help keep your brain as healthy as your smile!

Respiratory Issues

Oral infections and poor oral hygiene can lead to respiratory issues like pneumonia. Bacteria from the mouth can get sucked into the lungs, causing infections that may be particularly problematic for individuals with compromised immune systems.

Arthritis and Osteoporosis

Inflammation plays a central role in both arthritis and osteoporosis. Poor oral health, especially gum disease, can contribute to systemic inflammation. This increase in systemic inflammation can make arthritis and osteoporosis worse and harder to manage. 

Renal (Kidney) Issues

Medical experts have linked periodontitis and chronic kidney disease. They believe that the inflammation caused by gum disease can have a negative impact on kidney function. For patients with kidney disease, this can worsen the disease’s progression.

Prostate and Erectile Dysfunction

Research is ongoing, but some studies suggest that the inflammation associated with gum disease may be linked to prostate inflammation and erectile dysfunction. While more research is needed to establish a clear connection, it’s essential to consider oral health as a factor. 


Obesity and poor oral health often go hand in hand. Unhealthy eating habits and the consumption of sugary foods and beverages can contribute to both obesity and dental problems. Additionally, chronic inflammation from gum disease may affect metabolism, potentially playing a role in obesity.

Sleep Apnea

There’s a potential link between poor oral health and sleep apnea. Dental issues (such as misaligned teeth or a narrow upper jaw) can contribute to obstructive sleep apnea. Furthermore, inflammation in the airways from oral infections might worsen sleep apnea symptoms. Our Texas dentistry clinic provides sleep apnea treatments to keep your smile healthy while you sleep peacefully at night!

Texas Dentistry Clinic Near You

The connection between oral health and overall health is not one to be underestimated. Your mouth is a portal to the rest of your body, and what happens in your oral cavity can profoundly impact various systemic issues. 

To maintain good oral health and reduce the risk of these systemic issues, it’s crucial to visit our Texas dentistry clinic at least every six months. Schedule your appointment at Lakewood Dental Group here, or give our crew a call at (214) 827-1885 for information and more!

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