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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 3

Oral health and overall health

Professor (Retd), Dermatology and Venereology, Davangere, Karnataka, India

Date of Web Publication17-May-2019

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijohs.ijohs_16_19

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How to cite this article:
Ravindra K. Oral health and overall health. Int J Oral Health Sci 2019;9:3

How to cite this URL:
Ravindra K. Oral health and overall health. Int J Oral Health Sci [serial online] 2019 [cited 2022 Aug 18];9:3. Available from: https://www.ijohsjournal.org/text.asp?2019/9/1/3/258568

Oral cavity has a key role in mastication, speech, and immunological defense. Hence, a thorough examination of the oral cavity is must in medicine. It is well-known that integrated medicine can play an important role in coming out with a better outcome in patient care. General health and oral health are so much interlinked that they cannot be separated. Skin and oral cavity play an important role in the concept of body image.

Oral manifestations can be the manifestations of defects, diseases, deficiencies, etc. Defects in the architecture of the teeth and halitosis can result in dysmorphophobia. Some of the oral manifestations can be due to a local cause, but there are a seizable number of systemic diseases that can have oral manifestations. Many a times, the oral manifestations can be the first sign of a forthcoming or established internal disease.

Many of the oral pathological conditions can challenge the treating specialists in many branches of medicine. Hence, identification of these presentations can go a long way in arriving at an accurate diagnosis and help in rewarding satisfactory outcome to the needy patient. This can be boosted again by coordinating with dental specialists. The diseases can be as common and simple as the easily correctable nutritional deficiencies to fatal systemic diseases.

Oral ulceration can be the first or early manifestations in diseases such as pemphigus and lupus erythematosus. Crohn's presents with diffuse mucosal swelling, cobblestone mucosa, and localized mucogingivitis. Diffuse oral hyperpigmentation can be the earliest manifestation in Addison disease. Diabetes mellitus, HIV infection, thrombocytopenia, and leukemia present with severe periodontal inflammation and/or bleeding.

Certain manifestations of the teeth can be the indicators of various conditions. Discoloration can be due to poor oral hygiene, fluorosis, hyperbilirubinemia, and medications. Early loss of teeth is seen in diabetes mellitus, down syndrome, papillon–Lefevre syndrome, scurvy, leukemia, and HIV infection. Gingival bleeding can be drug induced, due to metabolic and hematologic diseases, sarcoidosis, Crohn's disease, scurvy, etc., Defective teeth can hinder the nutritional intake and can thus lead to various deficiencies which can affect the overall general health of the individual.

Advances in the field of dental sciences have brought a sea change in improving the health and cosmetic look as there are a good number of procedures that are available. It is worth to stress again that combined efforts are constantly needed to make the patients smile with high confidence.

In a nutshell oral cavity is unique in structure, development, and function. It can be a mirror of various diseases. Abundant vascularity and lymphatics cause easy spread of the disease, which reflects the value of good knowledge of psychological and pathological issue related to it.


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