Maintaining Healthy Gums for a Happy Heart

It is common knowledge that gum disease is one of the leading causes of tooth loss. Heart disease is one of the leading killers of both men and women in the United States. What you may not realize however is that gum disease can have a direct link to heart disease. A combined paper in the Journal of Periodontology and The American Journal of Cardiology in July 2009 was jointly published that links the two diseases. If you suffer from one or both of these problems, your doctors may start asking more and more about your oral and/or heart health and your family history in both areas. By looking across both aspects of heart health and gum health doctors are finding ways to detect risk factors and future disease progression in patients. Since this study was published, numerous medical studies link periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease. In fact, don’t be surprised if your heart doctor and your dentist begin corresponding if you have severe cases of either disease.

Inflammation is the primary culprit in both gum disease and heart disease. Chronic inflammation presents itself in patients with cardiovascular and or periodontal disease. You may think nothing about your slightly inflamed gums, but we bet you may pay closer attention if you knew that gum problems can lead to heart problems. Bacterial infection from severe gum disease can travel to the heart and cause devastating complications. It is important to take care of your teeth and gums for the sake of your oral health and heart health. Proper home care an important first step. Be sure to maintain daily home care by brushing twice a day and flossing daily. Good oral hygiene is not only vital for your dental health but your heart health as well.

Posted on the behalf of Mitzi Morris, DMD, PC