The Oral-Systemic Link: Bloomington Dentist Explains the Connection Between Oral and Whole Body Health

When it comes to taking care of your teeth and gums, you probably think about good oral hygiene primarily as a way to prevent cavities and unpleasant breath. While this is certainly true, there is much more to the story than that. Ongoing research has shown a clear link between oral health and whole body health and wellness. Dr. Mike and Dr. Marisa Milligan, at Eastland Dental Center inBloomington, Illinois, are taking steps to help their patients and the community better understand the Oral-Systemic Link.

The lifesaving potential of healthy teeth and gums

The mouth is sometimes called the “gateway to the body”. This is a great way of conceptualizing how your oral health can affect your whole body’s wellness. Just like what you eat affects the rest of your body, the health of your teeth, gums, and other oral structures can significantly impact your overall health. Bacteria from the mouth can easily travel to the rest of your body through your bloodstream, causing inflammation and disease. Recent studies have linked multiple deadly conditions to poor oral health, including:

  • Heart attacks and strokes
  • Certain cancers, including oral cancer
  • Respiratory diseases
  • Alzheimer’s and other dementias
  • Diabetes
  • Chronic kidney disease

In the reverse direction, symptoms of several diseases can also be detected in the mouth, such as mouth ulcers from Crohn’s disease or oral health problems like dry mouth and fungal infections from diabetes. 

Saving lives through oral-systemic health

Dr. Mike Milligan and Dr. Marisa Milligan and the team at Eastland Dental Center are committed to saving lives through oral-systemic health. Dr. Mike is the founder and president of the website, and has spoken on several radio shows about the oral-systemic link. The standard healthcare paradigm uses a siloed approach to dental and medical care, but Dr. Milligan is working to change that! By fostering collaborations with medical providers, our doctors can provide better care for our patients and help them potentially prevent a variety of systemic health problems. Additionally, we stay up-to-date on emerging research regarding the oral-systemic link so he can share that information with his patients. You can find a wealth of current information on the website. 

Dr. Mike and Dr. Marisa Milligan and our team are always happy to answer any questions you have about the mouth-body connection. To schedule your appointment at Eastland Dental Center, Bloomington, IL, call (309) 663-4711 today! 

Dr. Mike Milligan


Oral Ssystemic Link Logo

As the founder of Dr. Mike Milligan is an international
leader in the Dental Industry, helping other dentists to help their patients.

Eastland Dental Center

Eastland Dental Center is owned and operated by the father-daughter duo, Dr. Mike Milligan and Dr. Marisa Milligan.

Dr. Mike completed his doctor of dental medicine degree from Southern Illinois University in 1978. Dr. Marisa completed her doctor of dental medicine degree from Midwestern University in 2015. Both doctors have logged hundreds of hours of continuing education to stay on top of the latest technologies in dentistry as well as the most current research on the oral-systemic, mouth-body connection to benefit their patients. Dr. Mike and Dr. Marisa are active members and in excellent standing with the American Dental Association, Illinois State Dental Association, Chicago Dental Society, McLean County Dental Association, American Academy of Oral Systemic Health, and numerous other societies.

Both doctors are avid golfers and have won several national golf tournaments over the years. They are the only father-daughter team in the state to have won the Illinois State Amateur Golf Championship. Dr. Mike in 1974 and Dr. Marisa in 2005.