More and more physicians and dentists are teaming up to promote oral health – along with overall health. The link is clear: a healthy mouth is one key to a healthy body.

If you have a history of gum disease, your doctor should know about it. Either tell him/her, or ask your physician to take a look in your mouth. Then, ask a few simple questions to help you understand the mouth/body connection:

Questions to Ask Your Physician

  • Can you screen my teeth and gums for signs of disease?
  • What can I do at home to take better care of my mouth?
  • If you have diabetes or prediabetes, ask how taking care of your mouth can help manage your blood sugar level and slow the progression of your disease.
  • If you have heart trouble, ask how brushing and flossing regularly may reduce your risk of stroke.
  • Ask about any other inflammatory diseases you may have or are predisposed to, and how taking care of your mouth may help lower your risk.
  • Pregnant? Ask your doctor how your mouth can help protect your unborn baby from low birth weight and preterm labor. Learn more here
  • Do you smoke? Talk to your doctor about quitting. Smoking increases your risk of gum disease. Click here for help getting started.
  • Ask about the latest research on the potential links between rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, and Alzheimer’s and oral health — especially if any of these run in your family. You’ll want to work a little harder to take care of your pearly whites.