The mouth is an excellent gauge of one’s general health. This is readily seen with some individuals who have healthy gums that aren’t great brushers and flossers. These people tend to be healthy in general - physically active with good eating habits. The mouth is an organ attached to the body, but unlike the other organ systems it is easily accessible and able to be more readily assessed than other areas of the body. For instance, we see new patients who have bleeding gums, and upon blood testing discover that they also have an elevated blood glucose as well as high inflammatory markers, such as C Reactive Protein (hsCRP). The health of their gum tissue has been influenced by their general health, and as a result the gums become a more vulnerable target for the oral bacteria. So, there is a reciprocal effect here – if the body is unhealthy, one will be more at risk for gum disease which in turn adds a liability to one’s general health. So, when we assess the state of a new patient’s oral health by means of a phase microscope, plaque incubator assessment and blood testing, we are able to not only interpret the state of one’s gums, but an important aspect of their general health as well. The assessment information we develop lets us direct unhealthy patients to a proper provider to assist them in boosting their general health as well as giving us information to develop individualized oral health protocols that will positively influence both the state of their oral and general health.