We often forget that our bodies are not compartmentalized. Problems in one area can greatly affect other parts of the body. We can tell a lot about your child’s overall health when oral health issues occur.

The mouth creates a perfect home for bacteria. But with proper brushing and flossing, your child can keep bacteria levels from rising. If not, bacteria can cause tooth decay and gum disease.

Without treatment, some studies show that high counts of bacteria in the mouth and inflammation from severe cases of gum disease may play a role in other diseases throughout the body. Plus, certain diseases like HIV/AIDS and diabetes can lower your child’s resistance to infection, making oral health problems worse.

Help your child remember to brush and floss at least twice a day—their health depends on it!