Exercise and Oral Health: An Unlikely Combination

young smileThere is a direct relationship between your overall and oral health. This means that if you practice healthy habits, you will be more likely to have a healthy mouth, and if you maintain good oral health, you will be more likely to have good overall health. The roads to success with oral and overall health are similar: eat a healthy diet and exercise. That’s right, exercise. Most people understand how important a healthy diet is to their dental health but don’t understand the correlation between oral health and exercise. Des Moines dentist Dr. Stephen J. Burds discusses some ways that working out can keep your mouth healthy.

Ways Working Out Will Improve Oral Health

  • Exercise is a natural anti-inflammatory. Periodontal (gum) disease occurs when the gums inflame as a response to harmful bacteria in the mouth. Exercise can help reduce the body’s natural inflammation response, which in turn may reduce the risk for periodontal disease.
  • Working out helps your body effectively use vitamins and minerals. Exercise helps the body efficiently digest foods and absorb the vitamins and minerals essential for good dental health.
  • Exercise can help prevent diabetes. According to the American Diabetes Association and significant scientific research, there is a link between diabetes and gum disease. Working out regularly can help prevent, and in some cases even reverse, diabetes.
  • Working out can help you maintain a healthy weight. A study released in the August issue of the Journal of Periodontology shows that subjects who exercised, had healthy eating habits, and maintained a healthy weight were 40% less likely to develop periodontists. The occurrence of periodontitis was 29% less for subjects who had only two of the healthy habits, and 16% less in those with only one of the healthy habits.

Contact Your Des Moines Dentist

Besides eating a healthy diet and exercising, you should brush your teeth twice daily, floss daily, and attend regular dental checkups every six months to maintain optimum oral health. If you live in or near the 50309 zip code, contact Gateway Dental Group at (515) 244-9596 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Burds. We welcome patients from Des Moines, River Bend, Kirkwood Glen, East Village, and neighboring communities.