NHM Health Focus: Dental Hygiene
The American Dental Hygienists' Association (ADHA) sponsors National Dental Hygiene Month to increase public awareness of specific dental hygiene-related issues and to recognize the contributions dental hygienists make as they reach out to their communities. This year the focus of National Dental Hygiene Month (NDHM) is "the relationship between tobacco use and the increased prevalence of heart disease, and how these are linked to oral health."
"Recent studies have shown that tobacco use may be one of the most significant risk factors in the development and progression of periodontal disease." (AAP)
"Periodontal bacteria can enter the blood stream and travel to major organs and begin new infections. Research is suggesting that this may:
We also know that:
Avoiding tobacco products, spending a few minutes after each meal on dental hygiene, and selecting healthy foods have been shown to improve both current and future quality of life. Check Behind Your Smile, for information on your mouth and teeth. For more detailed and technical information please see the Merck Manual.
Access Excellence @ the National Health Museum has these resources related to dental health: