What is Oral Systemic Dentistry?

Just as the eyes are considered windows to the soul, the mouth is the gateway to the body. We use our mouths to eat, to breathe, to chew, to talk, and so many other things that are easily taken for granted. Oral Systemic Dentistry came about from the partnership between medical practitioners and dentists who understand that oral health is linked to overall health. Dr. Jim Erpenbach, D.D.S., partners with patients and their physicians to make sure that signs of disease evident in the mouth are examined to determine when they are indicative of systemic health problems.

Researchers have found links between the bacteria found on teeth and in the gums, often referred to as oral biofilm; and chronic conditions such as diabetes and hypertension. Mouth sores can indicate any number of chronic illnesses, and getting routine professional cleanings and examinations by an OHS dentist can be the first line of defense in preventing or minimizing the effects of these conditions.

Researchers have not verified the cause effect relationship between oral biofilm and chronic illnesses, but studies have proven that reduction of bacteria in the mouth correlates with less disease activity in the body.

Dr. Erpenbach recommends patients floss and brush their teeth at least twice a day, and get routine professional cleanings every six months. To schedule your next cleaning, contact our office at 865-584-8630.