|Photo by Jeff Seldon of UK's DFID.|
However, gum disease can affect the health of other systems of the body. Additionally, poor oral hygiene is correlated with poor self-care in other areas of the body.
The technical terms for gum disease are gingivitis and periodontitis.
1. gingivitis, meaning the inflammation of the gums (called the gingiva).
2. Left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis, which happens when immflamation causes the gums pull away from the teeth and gums bleed more readily. Left untreated, people with periodontitis can lose their teeth and suffer destruction of their mouth bones, gums and other tissue.
For a more thorough discussion of the causes, prevention, and treatment of gingivitis, see Medicine Net's page here.
The significance of gum health is demonstrated further by its inclusion as a biomarker of health and longevity.
This post is part of a series on biomarkers.