Sweating It Out: Does Exercise Help to Improve Gum Health?

December 12, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — flowermounds @ 9:06 pm
man and woman exercising

Whether you prefer to go for a run or jog, lift weights, or sweat it out on the treadmill or elliptical, exercise is a great way to boost your overall health. But your body isn’t actually the only thing that benefits from movement. In fact, your smile can reap many great benefits from it as well. Keep reading to learn how physical activity can help to prevent gum disease and poor oral health.

What Does Exercise Do to Reduce Gum Disease?

Everyone knows that exercise is helpful if you’re looking to shed a few pounds. Increasing your heart rate and getting your blood pumping is highly effective if a smaller waist or healthier heart is what you’re looking to achieve.

But did you know that moving your body can also reduce your risk of gum disease?

According to the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, adults who participated in the designated amount of exercise each day were less likely to have gum disease. Colgate also performed a study that revealed non-smokers who exercised regularly were 54% less likely to develop gum disease than those who also did not smoke but did not participate in physical activity.

It is believed that because exercise helps to lower the potential for inflammation throughout the body, it does the same inside the mouth, particularly within the gums. Also, exercise can be attributed to improving your body’s digestive system, so it can combat possible infections that might try to affect your mouth.

Tips for Better Exercise and Gum Health

If you want to start the new year off with better oral and overall health, you can begin by adopting healthy habits at home that include brushing, flossing, and rinsing daily. Also, eating a diet full of nutrient-rich foods (i.e., leafy greens, lean meats, low-fat dairy, fruits, vegetables, etc.) can help to strengthen tooth enamel and gums.

When it comes to exercise though, you don’t have to spend three hours in the gym just to avoid gum disease. You can opt for moderate activities and slowly work your way up to higher-intensity workouts. Gradually working your way up will be more effective and long-lasting as opposed to trying to make big changes in the beginning.

This can include taking a short walk around the neighborhood at lunchtime, going for a swim, or even doing yard work.

While there are many ways to lower your risk of gum disease, why not start moving your body more and enjoy the benefits of a healthier heart and smile?

About the Author
Dr. Lauri Barge completed her dental doctorate at Texas A&M College of Dentistry. Operating her own practice and working as a family and cosmetic dentist in Flower Mound, she and her team help patients who are looking for ways to take better care of their teeth and gums. Caring for more than just individuals’ smiles, she recommends additional ways to reduce inflammation and other symptoms commonly associated with gum disease. If you want help to lower your risk and maintain better oral and overall health, contact us via our website or by calling (972) 539-3800.