Reduce Pneumonia Risk by Practicing Good Oral Hygiene

Reduce Pneumonia Risk by Practicing Good Oral Hygiene

455625351When cold and flu season rolls around, many people are concerned that they may develop pneumonia. Although pneumonia is mostly a nuisance in younger people, the elderly are more drastically effected and can even die from it. With the Baby Boomer generation hitting retirement age en masse over the next couple of decades, pneumonia is a major concern.
One easy and proactive way to help prevent the risk of pneumonia is through the practice of good oral health. A study released by the Yale University School of Medicine further solidified a link between bacteria that grow in poor oral conditions and their affect on the lungs. Lung infections like pneumonia were found to develop and worsen in those who had poor dental health and greater mortality rates were also found in people who had more severe oral problems.
Lung infections can more easily occur when bacteria, fungal agents and their toxic byproducts are allowed to grow and multiply in the mouth due to poor oral hygiene. These microscopic agents are released from their incubatory nests of infected gums and dental caries and are breathed into the lungs where they can continue to thrive. Aspiration pneumonia is one such ailment that can develop through this process.
The development of pneumonia and other lung infections can be greatly lessened by practicing simple good oral health procedures. Dentists recommend brushing teeth twice daily for at least two minutes each time using a toothpaste containing fluoride. It is also advised to floss between teeth before each brushing in order to rid bacteria and plaque that tends to stick in these hard to reach places. Also, reduce sugar intake and avoid tobacco and alcohol use.
To ensure that your mouth and teeth remain healthy, you should make at least two dental appointments yearly for maintenance and early detection of oral problems. A dental professional can eliminate tartar buildup more thoroughly, provide expert instruction on dental care and rapidly cease and repair any damages that may have started through various oral problems.
Reducing your risk of acquiring pneumonia can be as easy as practicing good oral health and that is a major plus during each cold and flu season.
Want to see all the other health issues that can stem from not taking care of your teeth? Check out our interactive dental resource! It’ll change the way you think about oral health!

This article is part of our blog series, “The Deadly Consequences of Poor Dental Care

Poor Dental Care Consequences
Margaret Terpenning. “Geriatric Oral Health and Pneumonia Risk.” Clin Infect Dis. (2005) 40 (12): 1807-1810 doi:10.1086/430603

Keeping Our Patients Safe and Healthy at John R. Carson D.D.S., P.C.

Dear Patients,

As all of you know, our vision here at John R. Carson D.D.S., P.C. is to partner with patients to achieve the best for their long-term oral and overall health. We are honored to serve you. In light of current coronavirus/COVID-19 concerns affecting the world and an order from the Arizona Governor we, like all dental offices in Arizona, are closed for anything other than dental emergencies until April 3rd.

If you have a dental emergency, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are committed now and always to your needs.

The offices of John R. Carson D.D.S., P.C. continues to employ the most up-to-date infection control procedures and our record proves that they work really well! Rest assured that the infection control and standard precautions that we always employed are excellent deterrents to COVID-19 and every other virus. In addition to the routine steps we take, we are being even more vigilant of all the areas in the office. Surfaces in the reception area, front desk area, consultation area and restroom, which would normally be cleaned and disinfected daily, are now being disinfected throughout the day. Hand sanitizer is readily available in all areas of the practice for your use.

During this confusing and stressful time, staying healthy helps you fight off any challenge! Know that we take our role as your healthcare partner very seriously and are here to help! For the latest information and guidance, please refer to the CDC’s COVID-19 situation webpage, the Department of Public Health website, or ADA.

Stay safe and healthy—we look forward to seeing you soon.