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Oral health is extremely important for many reasons. If patients suffer from gum disease, cavities, or bad breath this can cause issues with your teeth and mouth. Our mouths are a pathway for bacteria to enter the body. The bacteria are able to enter the blood stream, and this can also cause infection or inflammation in other parts of our body.

Taking good care of your teeth and mouth can keep your body healthy, and can also help avoid serious issues in the future. At Art of Pediatric Dentistry in Bellevue, WA, we encourage our patients to practice good oral hygiene habits at home. We also promote overall health and wellness. Our team cares about each patient, and keeping up with your oral health not only can keep your teeth and mouth feeling great, but your body feeling great also.

What Problems Can Occur From Poor Oral Health?

Respiratory Infections

If you have infected or inflamed gums that bacteria can transfer into the lungs. This can lead to respiratory infections, pneumonia, or even bronchitis.


Inflamed gums can release substances that are harmful to our brain cells. This can lead to memory loss that is a result of bacteria spreading to the nerves.

Cardiovascular Disease

If you have poor oral health you are at risk for cardiovascular disease. The bacteria from the infected gums enters the bloodstream, and can cause the arteries to build up plaque. This can put you at risk for a heart attack.

Prostate Problems

If men suffer from periodontal disease they may have prostatitis. This condition causes irritation and other prostate related problems.


Diabetics are more likely to have infected gums over those that do not have diabetes. This can make diabetes difficult to control due to unregulated blood sugar levels. Gum disease can lead to higher blood sugar levels and this can put a person at risk for developing diabetes.


Poor oral health and infertility in women are linked. If a woman suffers from gum disease this can lead to issues with infertility, and may make it difficult for a woman to conceive or have a healthy pregnancy.


Poor oral health can put patients at risk for kidney cancer, pancreatic cancer, or blood cancer. In addition if patients smoke or use tobacco products this can lead to oral or throat cancers.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

People who have gum disease are more likely to have Rheumatoid Arthritis. The bacteria in our mouths can increase inflammation in the body, and this increases the risk for developing Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Kidney Disease

Kidney disease is a health problem that affects the kidneys, heart, bones, and blood pressure. Periodontal disease can lead to kidney disease. Patients with gum disease typically have weaker immune systems, and this can make them susceptible to infection. Many patients that have poor oral health also have kidney disease, and this can lead to kidney failure if not treated.

How Can I Prevent These Health Issues?

In order to prevent serious health issues caused by bad oral health habits you must take care of your oral health. Scheduling regular dental exams in our office can help keep your teeth and gums clean, and get in front of any issues before they arise. Dr. Yu Ong’s team always put our patients first, and complete a thorough exam of your teeth and mouth to ensure everything is looking and feeling great. If we do have concerns, we will discuss those with you and develop a customized treatment plan to take care of any issues right away.

Tips for Good Oral Hygiene

  • Brush and floss your teeth daily
  • Avoid smoking or using any tobacco products
  • Use mouthwash that contains fluoride
  • Try and stay away from food and drinks that contain lots of sugar
  • Eat a well-balanced diet
  • Exercise and take care of your overall health

If you take care of your oral health, you take care of your body. Good oral hygiene can help prevent problems such as gingivitis or periodontal disease, as well as prevent more serious health issues in your body.

Looking for a Family Dentist Near You?

At Art of Pediatric Dentistry, we provide the highest level of dental care for patients of all ages. We welcome all new patients, and use state of the art technology to ensure our patients have an exceptional experience when visiting our office.

If you are looking for a dentist in Bellevue, WA, contact Art of Pediatric Dentistry to schedule your next dental exam and our friendly staff will be happy to assist you!

One of the most common questions parents face is how to handle cavities during their child’s dental exam. If your child has cavities there are proper ways to handle those cavities in young children. Many parents ask if teeth should be pulled, and in most cases it is better to fill a cavity rather than pull the tooth.

At Art of Pediatric Dentistry in Bellevue, WA our patients’ health is our first priority. Before any treatment is done we discuss all options with the child’s parents and develop a customized treatment plan. Our team works to provide the highest level of care to ensure your child’s oral development is not affected.

Why Are Baby Teeth Important?

Baby teeth or primary teeth play an important role in the development of children. A child’s first teeth begin to erupt between the ages of six months to two years of age. Baby teeth help children to chew food properly as they move from milk or formula to solid foods. This aids in good nutrition and lessens the risk for choking.

Primary teeth also help children to speak and develop language. If a child has missing teeth, this can affect their speech or cause issues. Keeping baby teeth healthy and in place is necessary to ensure a child develops their speech properly. Primary teeth also help a child’s jaw growth or bite. If a child has missing teeth this can affect the development of the jaw, and lead to other orthodontic problems in the future.

Why Should You Keep Baby Teeth?

Baby teeth are meant to be kept in the mouth until they naturally fall out. Baby teeth help to hold space for the permanent tooth and prevent any collapsing due to empty space. If the surrounding teeth collapse this can cause the permanent tooth to be affected and erupt in the wrong position. In some cases permanent teeth can become impacted where they are unable to erupt at all. In addition, if a child has had multiple teeth removed this can cause their dental arch to collapse, create severe crowding, or even affect their airway.

How Should Cavities in Children Be Treated?

Small cavities in children are common and in most cases the cavity has begun the stage of softening or weakening the hard shell or enamel. At this point the cavity can still be reversed and we do not recommend treatment. To stop the progression we recommend good brushing and flossing to help stop the decay on the teeth.

If the cavity is severe we may recommend a filling to stop the decaying process and protect the permanent tooth underneath as well as the surrounding teeth. This allows the baby tooth to remain in the mouth until the tooth naturally falls out on its own.

When Is It Safe to Pull a Baby Tooth?

There are times when pulling a tooth may be necessary. Using X-rays Dr. Yu Ong will examine the primary tooth and determine where the permanent tooth is positioned. If the permanent tooth is close to eruption, pulling the tooth is safe. If the permanent tooth is not ready to erupt, pulling a primary tooth is risky, and the primary tooth should be kept in place.

If the cavity is so small that there is no risk to the permanent tooth or surrounding teeth, it is best to leave the primary tooth in place and let it fall out naturally. For children that have issues with the placement of permanent teeth, a primary tooth may need to be removed to help produce a better result in the future.

Looking for a Pediatric Dentist Near You?

Our goal at Art of Pediatric Dentistry is to always keep a child’s primary teeth in place, and only remove them if absolutely necessary. We want our pediatric patients to love visiting our office. Our skilled and caring staff always work to ensure each appointment is an amazing and positive experience.

If you are looking for a pediatric dentist in Bellevue, WA or have concerns about tooth extractions or dental fillings, contact our team to set up a consultation appointment for your child. Our friendly staff will be happy to assist you!

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