How does your oral health affect the rest of your body?

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"Oral health for total health” is one of our favorite sayings at Willo.

Our mouths contain a variety of bacteria, and while most of those microscopic bugs are harmless, some have the potential to cause diseasein the mouth and beyond.

With daily brushing and flossing, we can keep a lot of bacteria at bay. However, if a child (or adult) has inadequate oral hygiene, bacteria can reach levels that might lead to oral infections, such as tooth decay and gum disease. If those conditions are left uncontrolled, bad bacteria can spread to the rest of the body, potentially causing a variety of serious health conditions.

Oral health is linked to heart health.

A growing body of research shows that people with poor oral health are more likely to develop heart problems, including heart attack and stroke. Researchers are still trying to figure out the reason for this connection, but one plausible theory is that inflammation in the mouth (like gum disease) can cause inflammation throughout the body, including the heart. Studies have even shown that mouth bacteria can be found in heart valves and arteries. Because harmful bacteria are toxic, our immune system works overtime to reduce them, which increases inflammation and puts stress on the heart and cardiovascular system.

Oral health is also connected to diabetes.

The link between diabetes and oral health is well-established, and stronger scientific evidence emerges every year supporting the connection. The relationship between diabetes and oral health is “bi-directional.” In other words, diabetes can worsen oral health and poor oral health can also make the condition more difficult to control. That’s why it’s so important that people with diabetes take excellent care of their teeth and gums.

What other conditions may be associated with oral health?

Researchers are  exploring whether oral health—and especially gum health—plays a role in a variety of other health problems, including: adverse pregnancy outcomes, respiratory conditions, osteoporosis, certain types of cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and more! We keep learning more about these possible connections, so be sure to ask your oral health professional about the latest research.

How can Willo help?

Willo is the first tooth-brushing robot for kids. This automated system cuts down on user error and safely, consistently cleans teeth in an entirely new way, making it perfect for children who struggle to reach every tooth when brushing on their own. Willo helps remove plaque and sets your child up for a lifetime of healthy oral-care habits.