No one wants an unhealthy mouth! Not only can poor oral health lead to tooth loss, decay, and other mouth pain, but it can also cause issues in other parts of the body, including (as a worst case scenario) the heart.
That is why it is really important to both prevent and spot the signs of poor oral health. Here are the most common warning signs your mouth may be unhealthy:
1. Your Mouth Hurts
A really obvious sign that something may be wrong with your oral health is pain in your teeth, gums, jaw (or anywhere in your mouth, really). Many causes of pain, such as sinusitis or cavities, are relatively easy to treat. However, some jaw pains (at the most extreme levels) can indicate heart attack or oral cancer, so it is important that you address your pain rather than simply hoping it will go away.
2. Bleeding Gums
Bleeding gums is often an indicator of gum disease. When caught early, this is very treatable, but if you leave it for too long, you may suffer from tooth loss. So, as soon as you notice pain and bleeding in your gums, book an appointment with your dentist!
Bleeding gums, especially when accompanied by an unpleasant fruity smell, can also indicate diabetes, so you may want to see your physician too.
3. Loose (Adult) Teeth
Teeth that are loose or that have moved around in the mouth can indicate that you are in the advanced stages of gum disease. A swift intervention is necessary if you want to save as many of your teeth as you possibly can!
Loose adult teeth can also mean an osteoporosis diagnosis or that you have a beak in your jaw, although this will usually be accompanied by a lot of tooth pain. Regardless, it is a good idea to explore all options when it comes to this particular oral health warning sign.
4. Bad Breath
Another sign your mouth may be unhealthy is bad breath. While bad breath can often mean that you’re just not brushing enough or as quality as necessary, it can also be a warning sign for something more serious.
Bad breath can indicate anything from gum disease to a lung infection to diabetes, so if the dentist doesn’t find a problem, make an appointment with your physician to see if there could be a non-oral issue that you need to deal with.
If you spot any of these items, they are potential warning signs that your mouth may be unhealthy (or another area of your body as a worst-case scenario). While you may discover that these issues are benign or easily treatable, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
For other tips on taking care of your mouth, head to our dental health page.