Science & Medicine: Go to the dentist
When people think about things they can do to stay healthy, they don’t think about their teeth nearly enough.
He added that your mouth is packed with bacteria — both good and bad — and when that microbiome gets out of balance, you get inflammation.
“And this inflammation doesn't only affect the teeth and the gums but also can go on and affect the heart. It can have an impact on controlling diabetes,” Loomer said. “There's some studies showing impact on Alzheimer's disease and cognitive diseases and even kidney disease.”
But oral health care is expensive and some people can’t afford to ever see a dentist.
Loomer is working to do something about that with the UT Health San Antonio Center for Global and Community Oral Health.
“So this is a brand new research center that we've just started focused on improving oral health in the community, both locally and internationally. We work with populations that have health disparities. They may have had challenges accessing dental providers in some areas, especially in South Texas,” he said. “But we also are out there educating the students, educating the families, especially of newer immigrants who may not be aware of what they can do to prevent disease. So educating them to become more aware to improve their oral health.”
Loomer’s goal is that everyone has access to oral health care when they need it.
Science & Medicine is a collaboration between TPR and The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, about how scientific discovery in San Antonio advances the way medicine is practiced everywhere.