IS THERE A CONNECTION BETWEEN ORAL AND MENTAL HEALTH

Mental health is linked to oral health, and vice versa. Good oral health can enhance mental and overall health, while poor oral health can exacerbate mental issues. Likewise, mental conditions can cause oral health issues. The connection between them is direct, cyclical and, when oral health is neglected, detrimental.

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DIABETES AND YOUR TEETH

Diabetes may cause serious problems with keeping your mouth healthy and having an attractive smile. The disease causes difficulties in the mouth, and problems in the mouth may cause trouble with diabetes. With diabetes, glucose is present in the saliva. When diabetes is not controlled, increased glucose in the saliva allows harmful bacteria to grow.   Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is the most widespread chronic inflammatory condition worldwide, says Dr. Wayne Aldredge.

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SMART APPS FOR DENTAL HEALTH CARE

Oral health is often taken for granted. The mouth is a window into the health of the entire body. It can show signs of nutritional deficiencies or general infection. Systemic diseases – those that affect the entire body – may first become apparent because of mouth lesions or other oral problems.   Regardless of age, oral health is very important. Positive oral health leads to improved overall health. More Americans today are keeping their natural teeth throughout their lives.

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•  Third, keep an upbeat outlook. Don’t be embarrassed or intimidated because you believe in God. Begin each prayer with praise to God for what God has done for you today. Praise God for love and continuing mercies.


•  Fourth, realize there is a lack of understanding of mental health issues, largely because most people have not dealt with mental illness. This ignorance no doubt contributes to the stigma that sometimes surrounds mentally ill people and their families. You may not receive a lot of empathy from other people. You may even be blamed for your loved one’s mental illness. But it’s not your fault no matter what others think.


The late John Glenn, the first human to “break the surly bonds of earth” and fly into space, was quoted as saying, “To look out at this kind of creation and not believe in God is to me impossible.” To look out at your own private landscape and not include an active faith in the One who created it all is to miss the source of the best help there is.

Mental illness is a broad term. It may describe a child born with Down syndrome. Children who develop autism are defined as having a mental health disorder. Schizophrenia is a major public health problem worldwide. Alzheimer’s and numerous other dementias that beset humans as they age are frequently referred to as mental illnesses.


Observing any of these conditions in someone who is important in your life is stressful. The occurrence of mental illness in a family changes living habits. Family members may suddenly require new coping skills. If you or a loved one were faced with mental illness, where would you turn for help? Perhaps you would ask a doctor for advice about what to expect in the future or what physical arrangements in the home must be adopted. But where or to whom would you turn for emotional and psychological support?


If you have automobile trouble, to whom do you go? To someone who knows how the car is made. When something goes wrong with another human, would it occur to you to turn to the One who designed and created humans in the first place?


Wherever you are on the continuum of faith – from none to the full Christian belief that the great Creator God loved the humans God had created enough to take on the punishment for their sins, as seen in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ – it seems plausible to think that

HOW FAITH HELPS YOU SURVIVE A LOVED ONE’S MENTAL HEALTH DISORDERS

MARTHA EVANS SPARKS

Martha Evans Sparks is a Staff Writer for Health & Wellness Magazine

more articles by martha evans sparks

in a time of great stress, someone would turn for help to a higher power, some entity bigger than himself or herself. How do you survive emotionally as you watch dementia or other mental illness develop in someone you love? Is there a private moment when you cry out, “Oh, God, what do I do now?” Assuming that at least a shred of faith in God exists, here are some survival ideas:


•  First, pray. However you do it, prayer is talking to God. A conversation with God need not be stilted. Tell God your troubles, just as if you could see God sitting beside you. Tell God the stupid things you’ve done. Tell God how you would solve your problem if it were up to you. Tell God what you really think of your mother-in-law or your spouse. God already knows what you think, but somehow it helps to get it off your chest. God is listening, so go ahead and ask God about the things that totally stump you.


•  Second, find out all you can about the specific mental illness with which you must deal. Learn the formal, medical name of the condition. Go online to discover what research is going on now and what treatments are available. The more you know, the better questions you can ask and the better you can plan for the future.