home Blog 9 Long-Term Dangers of Ignoring Dental Problems

9 Long-Term Dangers of Ignoring Dental Problems

Many oral health problems like tooth decay and gum disease can be prevented with regular dental care and routine cleanings. But, if ignored, these problems can have serious consequences.

Poor oral health can be linked to conditions such as HIV/AIDS, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes. It may even lead to a life-threatening brain abscess, a rare condition in which pus collects in the brain.

1. Tooth Decay

The pain of a toothache is your body’s warning signal that something is wrong. When left untreated, the problem will worsen over time, resulting in costly dental work and possibly other health problems.

Tooth decay happens when food particles cling to teeth for long periods of time, especially the back teeth (molars and premolars) which have grooves, pits and crannies that can collect bits of food that are hard to wash away with saliva. This encourages bacteria to create acids that attack and destroy tooth enamel over time.

When the erosion reaches dentin, you experience a toothache. This is caused by the bacterial acid eroding the inner part of your tooth called the pulp, which contains nerves and blood vessels. The pain is typically sharp and severe, lasting for several minutes and often requiring medication like ibuprofen or paracetamol to manage it. When left untreated, the decay will eventually eat through your tooth and cause a dental abscess.

2. Gum Disease

Gum disease develops over time and can have a negative effect on your oral and general health. It can progress from gingivitis (the earliest stage) to periodontitis, which can cause tooth and bone loss and make it harder to chew or talk.

Bacteria and toxins released from inflamed gums can enter the bloodstream and affect other tissues and organs. Studies have linked gum disease to diabetes, heart disease and poor pregnancy outcomes.

It’s also important to visit your dentist regularly because they can spot small problems and address them before they become bigger, less treatable issues. They can also help you maintain a good dental hygiene routine to keep your mouth and gums healthy. Visiting a dentist like Grin Dentistry can prevent gum disease, which can lead to bone loss, misaligned teeth and other health concerns. It can also reduce your risk of infections, which can cause serious medical complications. It is also recommended to visit the dentist if you have certain conditions that can impact your oral health, including HIV/AIDS, osteoporosis and other bone-weakening drugs, cancer and an immune system disorder that causes dry mouth (Sjogren’s syndrome).

3. Bad Breath

Bad breath (halitosis) often stems from a lack of oral hygiene. However, if halitosis persists, it may also signal an infection or other medical issue.

Medications can also contribute to bad breath. A visit to a doctor will help determine the source of the odor and recommend treatment.

To prevent bad breath, suck on sugar-free mints or chew gum after eating and drink plenty of water throughout the day. If your mouth is dry, drink a glass of water with added salt or swish an alcohol-free mouthwash around your teeth and gums. Keep a log of what you eat to make sure you’re eating healthy foods that promote saliva production. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss to remove food debris and plaque. And don’t forget to visit your dentist regularly for a professional teeth cleaning and oral exam. They’ll be able to spot issues such as gum disease and dry mouth before they cause more serious problems.

4. Tooth Loss

Whether from infection, gum disease, or injury, many oral health problems don’t go away on their own. Often, they worsen over time and lead to serious consequences. For example, a small cavity left untreated can destroy the tooth and require root canal therapy or the removal of the entire tooth.

Missing teeth can also cause a number of problems, including changes in the bite and difficulty chewing and speaking. Tooth loss can also affect a person’s self-confidence and appearance.

Tooth loss is more common among people who don’t see the dentist regularly. These people may lack dental insurance, have a fear or anxiety about the dentist, or not have enough money to pay for regular dental care. Additionally, people with certain diseases have higher rates of tooth loss. These include HIV/AIDS, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and other inflammatory conditions that damage the mouth and jaw. Other risk factors include smoking, consuming acidic foods or beverages, and having chronic diseases like heart disease.

5. Heart Disease

dental checkup - 9 Long-Term Dangers of Ignoring Dental Problems

Many dental problems can be easily prevented and treated if they are caught early. By visiting your dentist for regular checkups, you can be sure that any issues are addressed before they progress and cause more invasive and costly treatments.

The bacteria that cause gum disease can enter the bloodstream, and once they do, they can damage arteries and increase your chances of having a heart attack or stroke. Additionally, the same bacteria can be breathed into the lungs and lead to respiratory infections like acute bronchitis or pneumonia.

Other studies have found that there is a link between gum disease and cardiovascular disease, as well as rheumatoid arthritis and certain cancers. While it’s important to note that these findings are only associations and not causation, it is a reminder of how serious it is to neglect your oral health.

6. Mouth Cancer

Those who neglect dental care and don’t see their dentist regularly are at risk of developing mouth cancer. Mouth cancer is a dangerous disease that can be fatal. It can spread to other parts of the body if not treated early. Visiting your dentist and doctor regularly can help you spot suspicious changes in the oral cavity and other parts of your body so that they can be diagnosed and treated.

Regular visits to the dentist prevent minor issues from turning into major problems. For example, a broken tooth left untreated can worsen over time and cause further complications. The cost of repairing the break can be much more than it would have been with prompt treatment.

Poor oral health is linked to other medical conditions, such as HIV/AIDS, osteoporosis and an immune system condition that leads to dry mouth (Sjogren’s syndrome). These conditions can increase the risk of developing gum disease and lead to poorer overall health.

7. Stroke

When it comes to dental emergencies like toothaches and broken teeth, ignoring them is never a good idea. These problems can lead to serious health consequences.

Tooth decay and gum disease can cause pain and infections, but the damage doesn’t stop there. These conditions can also increase your risk of stroke. Stroke can cause brain damage, disability, and even death.

Another danger of ignoring dental problems is that they can lead to jawbone deterioration. When teeth are lost or removed, the jawbone doesn’t get the stimulation it needs to remain strong and healthy. This can lead to facial sagging and prematurely aged appearance, which no one wants!

Ignoring dental issues for too long can lead to costly treatment and health problems down the road.

8. Diabetes

A lot of dental problems don’t just affect the mouth — they can also have a significant impact on our overall health. That’s why regular visits to Bulverde North Family Dental are so important!

Some medical conditions that can worsen dental problems include diabetes, osteoporosis and HIV/AIDS. These diseases can cause problems like dry mouth, which makes it difficult to clean your teeth. These conditions can also weaken your jawbones, causing tooth loss and affecting the alignment of your remaining teeth.

Even seemingly minor dental problems can turn into serious emergencies if ignored. For example, ignoring a broken tooth can lead to further damage, which could result in an infection that spreads to other parts of the body. It can also affect the surrounding teeth and lead to TMJ syndrome, which is very painful. The longer you wait to see a dentist, the more damage the problem will cause and the more expensive it will be to fix.

9. Cancer

There are many diseases and health problems that can be linked to oral health, including HIV/AIDS (which can cause painful mucosal lesions), osteoporosis (which can lead to periodontal bone loss) and certain medications (such as those for rheumatoid arthritis or cancer) that can have a negative effect on the mouth. Taking a “wait and see” approach to dental emergencies can have serious consequences for your overall health. The pain of a toothache is often your body’s way of telling you something is wrong.