Have you seen blood in your toothbrush after brushing? Do you feel pain or unusual feeling in your gums? Well, you might be experiencing gingivitis or gum disease. You may also neglect bleeding in your gums because it seems like a minor health concern, but what we don’t know is there’s a direct link between your gum or oral health and the over-all well-being of individuals. Problems in the mouth such as in the gums and teeth may contribute to problems in the whole body. In this line, gingivitis may actually lead to more severe and systemic health concerns beyond the mouth.

Locally, gingivitis can cause pulling of the gums off the teeth that may contribute to tooth loss as well as bone infection underlying the teeth. It can also cause halitosis or bad breath because the swollen and inflamed gums may harbour millions of oral bacteria that produce ketone bodies responsible for an odorous breath.

Aside from the local effects of gingivitis in the mouth, it can actually cause health concerns all over the body. To study the dangers of gingivitis, the following are the common effects of gum disease in the body:

• Increases the risk for health problems
When gingivitis is present, there is possibility of dental plaques and dental caries that can increase the bacteria present in the mouth. These bacteria can actually travel to the systemic circulation and may lodge in the heart and cause infection such as bacterial endocarditis. Over time, this heart condition may predispose an individual to heart attacks.

• Increases the effects of diabetes
Most of the people also don’t know that gum disease may lead to diabetes. The reason for this is the presence of chronic inflammation in the body that can possibly increase insulin resistance by the cells. Also, people with diabetes may also develop gingivitis easily.

• Leads to cognitive impairments
Studies show that gum disease may possibly lead to dementia, poor memory and poor cognitive abilities such as poor calculations and the like.

• Possibly contributes to rheumatoid arthritis development
Rheumatoid arthritis is a joint condition characterized by marked inflammation due to an autoimmune condition. Inflammation in the gums may also lead to systemic inflammation in the body, including the joints contributing to swollen, stiff and painful joints that tend to be bilateral.

• Causes preterm births
Pregnant mothers who develop pathologic gum disease were also found to be more at risk for giving birth prematurely, which can pose health risks to the newborn because of premature condition. However, some studies don’t support this. Nevertheless, avoiding gingivitis and other forms of conditions are best during pregnancy.

Gingivitis is now a major health concern of people all over the world due to infrequent visits to the dentist, not brushing regularly and not flossing. Preventing gingivitis is a big step in maintaining a healthy body and maintaining well-being so measures should be employed to prevent gum or periodontal disease. Gingivitis is seemingly a minor health concern, but you can just be surprised on how much impact it can cause to the body.