How Cavities Impact Overall Health

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How Cavities Impact Overall Health

At Walker Pediatric Dentistry, one of our primary goals is helping prevent cavities in your children. Cavities, which are almost completely preventable, are issues on their own – but they’re also linked to other major diseases, some of which can actually be life-threatening.

What are some of the other conditions that may result long term if your child doesn’t get the proper protection from cavities and tooth decay? Let’s take a look.

Tooth Decay and Infection

Severe cavities and related tooth decay are some of the primary causes of tooth loss, both in children and in adults. Tooth loss leads to an increased risk of infection – this includes lung infection or even pneumonia that can result from gum disease. Tooth infections can then lead to a deeper infection found in pulp tissue, which can be expensive to treat and may even result in a medical emergency or hospital trip.

Heart Disease

Cavities are the result of buildups of plaque in the mouth, and these buildups can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke as well. The bacteria that cause cavities can also release toxins, which travel through the bloodstream and form similar plaque deposits in the arteries. These in turn up the chances of heart disease.


Cavities and gum disease are also associated with rising blood sugar, which affects people with diabetes negatively. Improving oral habits, on the other hand, can help improve blood sugar control and can slow the progression of diabetes. Children with diabetes should always follow a detailed oral health routine, with their pediatric dentist aware of their condition.


Cavities are almost completely preventable in all people, particularly children. Children should brush twice a day for two minutes per session, and should floss every day. You should also look for ways to limit their sugary drink and starchy food intake, as these both can feed bacteria that lead to cavity formation.

For more on the health areas that preventing cavities can assist with, or to learn about any of our other services, contact Walker Pediatric Dentistry today.