What your teeth have to say about your health….

“Some messages coming out of your mouth bypass the vocal chords. Turns out that your teeth, gums, and surrounding tissues also have plenty to say — about your overall health.”

Here are some of the signs to look for:

Flat, worn teeth and headache — Sign of: Stress

Many people are surprised to find out they’re tooth-grinders. You might be doing it in your sleep.

Cracking, crumbling teeth — Sign of: Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)

Tooth erosion isn’t a consequence of aging. Disintegrating teeth are usually caused by acid that’s coming up from the stomach and dissolving them

Sores that won’t go away — Sign of: Oral cancer

When an open sore in the mouth doesn’t go away within a week or two, it always warrants showing to a dentist or doctor.

Gums growing over teeth — Sign of: Medication problems

This can be caused by medication for heart disease or seizures, or drugs that suppress your immune system.

Dry mouth — Sign of: Sjogren’s Syndrome and/or Diabetes

Many things can cause dry mouth, but a lack of sufficient saliva can also be an early warning sign of two autoimmune diseases — Sjogren’s syndrome and diabetes.

White webbing inside cheeks — Sign of: Lichen planus

This mild skin disorder tends to strike both men and women between the ages 30 and 70.

Crusting dentures — Sign of: Potential aspiration pneumonia

Aspiration pneumonia, often caused by inhaling debris around the teeth and dentures, is a leading cause of death in older people.

KSBW November 11, 2010