Oral diseases are caused by a series of modifiable risk factors common to many non-communicable diseases (NCDs), such as the consumption of sugar, tobacco, alcohol and lack of hygiene, and their underlying social and commercial determinants. Periodontal (gum) disease is an infection of the tissues that hold the teeth in place. It's usually caused by poor brushing and flossing habits that allow plaque, a sticky film of bacteria, to build up on the teeth and harden. In advanced stages, periodontal disease can cause gum pain and bleeding, painful chewing problems, and even tooth loss.
Studies suggest that oral bacteria and inflammation associated with a severe form of gum disease (periodontitis) may play a role in some diseases. Research shows that people who have gum disease have a harder time controlling their blood sugar levels. Smoking interferes with the normal functioning of gum tissue cells, making the mouth more vulnerable to infections such as gum disease. However, without proper oral hygiene, bacteria can reach levels that could lead to oral infections, such as tooth decay and gum disease.
Saliva eliminates food and neutralizes acids produced by bacteria in the mouth, helping to protect you from microbes that multiply and cause diseases.