Flossing and Heart Health
New Year's is always resolutions time. But why put off until tomorrow what you can do today? How about a new super healthy habit? “Flossing Your Heart!” That's right, don't just stop at your teeth, but really get in there where it will make a difference.
1) Break off a really-really long length of your favorite dental floss. (Waxed might be best)
2) Tie each end to an index finger.
3) Now just swallow a few times until you feel the floss snuggly around your heart.
Now that you are busy flossing, you have time to listen to a few dental fun facts!
Did you know that an unhealthy mouth can affect the health of other organs and systems in your body? It's true! If the bacteria in your mouth multiply too much, they have to go looking for a less crowded neighborhood. So they jump a ride in your bloodstream and go on adventures to other exotic lands. Like your heart and your brain! Studies are showing that poor oral health is a strong predictor of heart disease, stroke and diabetes!*
(Does your heart feel a little cleaner? Keep flossing and read on!) I bet you didn't know that a healthy mouth was so important. And the great thing is that it is super easy to keep that bacteria count low.
Visit your dental hygienist today and have her measure your bacteria level.
If your level is good she will give you a sticker and see you in 6 months. If she needs to do some deeper therapy to lower the number of bacteria, she may want to see you for some extra visits called Scaling and Root Planning. She may even place a little pellet of antibiotic in any really bad area to help wean it back to health.
Don't be embarrassed of periodontal disease. Sometimes it is hereditary, so here's another thing you can blame on Dad and Mom! If you have always had healthy gums but have recently been diagnosed with osteoporosis, diabetes or an immune disorder, get to your hygienist right away. These diseases can make you more prone to extra bacteria in your mouth. **
Your hygienist will clear away the extra bacteria from your gums and teeth so they can get back to being all soft and pink and super healthy.
Follow her advice to come every 3, 4 or 6 months to keep the bacteria at a healthy level. She may bug you about that smoking habit too. Smoking puts you at a greater risk for periodontal disease and oral cancer. Each time you come she will see how you have improved and applaud. Any treatment not covered by insurance is a priceless lifesaving investment.
Okay, so you can't actually floss your heart or arteries. But you can make a resolution to be more kind and loving to those around you and to floss!