medical education

Oral Health and Overall Health

Though separated professionally and in the minds of many, our teeth are part of our overall health.  Dental disease has an impact outside of the mouth. There is growing research into oral-systemic links with diseases such as diabetes and heart disease and dental caries is the most prevalent chronic disease in the US. Our dentition is critical for everyday functions such as speech and mastication. No longer can the mindset of “it’s just teeth” continue.  Oral health treated as part of overall health is the future.

In 2020 the American Dental Association recognized Oral Medicine as the eleventh dental specialty. The long existent but newly ADA recognized specialty has a vision to “integrate medicine and dentistry to promote optimal health.” The growing recognition of the importance of oral health in overall health is evident at the national level elsewhere. The CDC released Health People 2030 “a science-based, 10-year national objectives with the goal of improving the health of all Americans.” Among its objectives, 15 pertain to oral health.

In light of the growing research and national initiatives, healthcare corporations and FQHCs are prioritizing oral health with the addition of dental departments. With the trend towards multidisciplinary healthcare evident, we as providers can benefit from learning more about one another’s field to best treat the patient.

Jackson Threet, II D.M.D.
Henritze Dental Group
Martinsville, VA

Dr. Jackson Threet is a speaker at our upcoming Head for the Hills Conference in November. Threet will be discussing Dentition & Diabetes and Opioid Alternatives for Odontogenic Pain.

View the rest of the agenda here!

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