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The Surprising Ways Your Oral Health Affects Your Immune System

July 19, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — docvacek @ 2:16 pm
Woman brushing her teeth to boost her immune system

While COVID-19 remains a risk, it’s more important than ever to keep your immune system strong and healthy. Your immune system protects your body from infection, so boosting it could be enough to prevent getting the Coronavirus. Reducing stress, exercising, eating healthy, and sleeping regularly can boost your immune system, but did you know that taking care of your smile can help, too? Keep reading to learn about the surprising relationship between your oral health and immune system as well as some ways you can protect yourself against infection.

How Can Your Smile Impact Your Immune System?

Typically, bacteria in the mouth do not enter the bloodstream, leaving your immune system unaffected. However, when regular dental hygiene isn’t practiced, plaque and bacteria buildup, causing problems like gum disease and decay. Gum disease is an infection and inflammation of the gums that can spread if left untreated. If this problem goes unchecked, it sets off an immune response that would occur with any inflammation, causing your immune system to ignore other parts of the body. Once bacteria get into the bloodstream from poor at-home dental care, your immune system becomes weaker.

What Can You Do to Strengthen Your Immune System?

Thankfully, there are steps you can take to prevent this problem from occurring, which is especially important when the Coronavirus is prevalent. Follow these tips to keep your mouth and body as healthy as possible during this uncertain time:

Regular Brushing

A good at-home dental hygiene routine all starts with regular brushing. Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each session, paying special attention to your gumline. Angle your brush at 45-degrees for the most thorough cleaning. If you feel like you need help cleaning your teeth, don’t be afraid to invest in an electric toothbrush for more effective plaque removal.

Don’t Forget to Floss

Brushing often gets the spotlight when it comes to oral healthcare at home, but your dentist says flossing is just as important. Be sure to floss once a day to remove plaque and bacteria from in between your teeth and off of your gums. This will help prevent gum infection and inflammation, minimizing the possibility that bacteria get in your bloodstream.

Use Mouthwash

For an extra level of cleaning, try adding mouthwash to your routine. This will not only leave you with refreshed breath, but it can clean areas of the mouth that are hard to reach with brushing and flossing. Just make sure that you choose a mouth rinse without alcohol because this ingredient limits saliva flow, increasing the chances of bacterial growth.

Are you ready to protect yourself against COVID-19 while keeping your mouth healthy? Remember these important tips so you can boost your immune system with a smile!

Meet the Dentist

Dr. Tim Vacek is an experienced dentist who understands the relationship between your oral health and immune system, which is why he offers thorough gum disease therapy and tips for at home care. His practice is updated with new safety measures to keep patients and staff safe. If you have any questions, he can be reached through his website or by phone at (402) 786-2007.  

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