While there is no denying that teeth are an important part of the human body, there are those who would care less about the state of their own dental health. Some people fail to realize that their teeth’s health can affect the rest of their body. An article published in the Medical Xpress website last October 22, 2014 substantiates this point by linking respiratory disease to poor dental health of patients in hospital ICUs, and that by treating dental problems, patients can avoid the complication. The report goes:
New research shows vulnerable patients in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) who received enhanced oral care from a dentist were at significantly less risk for developing a lower respiratory tract infection (LRTI), like ventilator-associated pneumonia, during their stay. The study was published in the November issue of Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, the journal of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA).
“Bacteria causing healthcare-associated infections often start in the oral cavity,” said Fernando Bellissimo-Rodrigues, MD, lead author of the study. “This study suggests that having a dentist provide weekly care as part the ICU team may improve outcomes for vulnerable patients in this setting.”
Even something as small as a single dental cavity can lead to all sorts of medical complications. Aside from the possible risk of contracting a respiratory disease while in the ICU, patients who refuse proper dental treatment endanger themselves to disorders such as permanent tooth loss, gum diseases, and even a decrease in the bone mass of their jaws.
Regular Dental Checkup
Individuals should supplement their daily brushing and flossing with the occasional trip to a local dentist in Kirkland, WA, such as Louis K. Cheung, DDS, so that they can receive proper dental treatment to preempt more serious medical concerns.
Dental caries can be largely avoided through brushing and flossing every day; the habits can cut down on destructive plaque and bacteria buildup, which are the causes of tooth decay. Even if the decay already sets in and cavities start appearing, that does not mean it is too late to stop it. An experienced dentist in Kirkland is the most ideal person to help patients fight cavities; as a professional, he should be able to cover up the cavities (or replace cavity-damaged teeth) and ensure that future damage can be prevented.
(Source: Proper dental care linked to reduced risk of respiratory infections in ICU patients, medicalxpress.com, Oct. 22, 2014)