65% of people believe being overweight puts you at a (much) higher risk for oral health diseases
For most people, excessive weight and dental issues go hand in hand, results from the survey “Overweight & Oral Health” show. The main reason for the negative effect on oral health is that weight gain often leads to many general health issues. They in return can trigger dental diseases, respondents believe. Furthermore, the results show that the majority of people consider that the root causes of weight gain and bad oral health are quite common, for example in terms of shared risk factors such as unhealthy diet and excessive eating.
- Reasons to associate overweight with dental diseases
- Perspectives on the shared risk factors
- Oral health issues linked to overweight
Reasons to associate overweight with dental diseases
42% of respondents believe that excessive weight causes health problems and that itself leads to dental issues. This view resonates with the findings of other research identifying more dental diseases for overweight people as compared to people of normal weight. In relation to overweight-caused diseases specifically, it is known to increase the risk for diabetes type-2, which has serious implications for oral health.
Another interesting finding from the survey is that one in five respondents view overweight people as more negligent towards their health. According to them, this is in fact the reason for the higher risk of oral health diseases. Such opinions may not be so surprising considering that gain weight is commonly seen as a result of an unhealthy diet.
Perspectives on the shared risk factors
Overall, unhealthy eating habits are recognized as the most common risk factors for overweight and poor oral health. 67% of respondents pinpoint the consumption of added sugar. And similarly, over 40% of participants in the research refer to frequent eating. Almost the same share of respondents identifies the eating of many processed foods. For each of these shared risk factors for both conditions, there are already a number of other studies confirming their effect. For instance, high sugar intake is a known culprit both for tooth decay and weight gain.
Oral health issues linked to overweight
One-third of respondents consider that excessive weight triggers all dental diseases alike. 26% of survey participants pinpoint tooth decay as the most common issue for overweight people, and just 9% of the respondents identify gum disease as a potential overweight-inflicted oral disease. This rather low percentage may be surprising as the risk for all gum issues such as bleeding, gum diseases, and severe periodontitis has been established as much higher among overweight people.
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