The link between oral health and respiratory system

Do you know that poor oral health can infect every aspect of your body?

On average, your mouth is a habitat of 6 billion bacteria that belong to different species. When you ingest those microbes, they enter the bloodstream and can easily intrude on the internal organs.

In simply, poor oral care is also a key factor behind various bodily disorders. In this blog post, we are going to discuss how the link between oral microbiota and respiratory disorders.

Keep reading to know more about them.

How do oral bacteria affect your lungs?

Mostly, the bacteria in the mouth travel to the lungs through airways or tiny droplets of saliva. Researches also ensure that microorganisms present in the oral cavity can be easily entered into the lower respiratory tract and provoke respiratory illnesses like asthma, pneumonia, pulmonary fibrosis, COPD, and even lung cancer.

People with healthy immune systems have fewer chances of being infected with bacterial invasion on the lungs.

On the other hand, individuals who have compromised immune systems are highly at risk of developing lung diseases due to their dental disorders. Likewise, oral invasion is also powerful to deteriorate the existing respiratory disorders.

Dentists and Oral hygienists have mentioned the following group of people are highly at risk of developing lung disorders due to poor oral care:

  • Older adults
  • Smokers
  • HIV patients
  • People suffering from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Gum disease sufferers

Simultaneously, the lung disease sufferers are at risk of developing dental disorders as a consequence of the debilitating illness, even though he/she maintains a healthy oral care regimen.

How do respiratory illnesses cause oral problems?

You might witness that asthma patients develop certain oral discomforts like burning sensation in the mouth, bad breath, colored patches in their mouth, etc.

It applies to all kinds of respiratory diseases. It happens as a side effect of medications taken to treat lung diseases. Such side effects begin from lung disease medications occur due to the following reasons:

Some medications prescribed for lung diseases can disrupt the flora balance in your mouth. It lays a way for the growth of yeast infection followed by oral thrush. This is the reason behind the red-colored lesions, discolored patches developed over various regions of the oral cavity.

The acidic compounds in certain medications of respiratory disorders cause pH imbalance and absorb saliva from the mouth. It leads to the breeding of oral microbes in the mouth which are linked to consequences like cavity, bad breath, dry mouth, burning mouth syndrome, etc.

In simply, the intake of certain respiratory diseases medications integrates with systematic inflammation and puts our oral health at risk.

Bottom line

If you notice any difficulties in your mouth after taking the drugs and medicines your doctor recommended to treat lung diseases, consult him/her to get an alternative medication.

In the meantime, maintain a healthy oral hygiene routine such as brushing twice a day, flossing, mouth rinsing with anti-acidic mouthwashes, swish your mouth after every meal along with bi-annual dental visits. Remember that timely dental checkups will help you to identify some bodily disorders including lung diseases at an early stage.

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