Relationship between healthy gums and heart

Bay Area

If you’re watching your diet and exercising for good heart health, here’s one more health habit to add to your daily routine.

Health expert, Karen Owoc, says the health of your gums is a reflection of the health of your heart.

Doctors and researchers are finding a relationship between the health of your gums and the health of your gums.

  • Gum disease, also called periodontal disease, is one of the most common infections in humans.
  • Is a chronic inflammatory disease that inflames your gums.
  • Causes bacteria to develop on the surface of the tooth root.

Just like the flu can cause inflammation of vital organs and result in multiple organ failure, inflamed gums can cause your gums, teeth, and bone tissues to deteriorate.

Cardiac muscle tissue and arteries are also vulnerable to inflammation which can lead to many conditions, such as a heart attack and stroke.

Inflammation may cause the plaque inside blood vessels to crack, rupture, and dislodge which could result in a blockage within an artery.

Heart disease is caused by a narrowing or blockage from plaque buildup within your blood vessels.

How Gum Disease and Heart Disease are Related

There’s growing evidence that gum disease is associated with negative systemic health consequences.

Treatment

Treatment can be as simple as cleaning the teeth above and below the gum line, called “scaling and root planing”. In more advanced cases, surgery is necessary.

Results

The researchers discovered that cardiovascular care costs were 10 to 40 percent lower in those that received adequate oral care for their gum disease compared to those who did not.

The implication from these results is gum health affects heart health.

In another review of several studies, it was concluded that is is now clear that a potential link exists between periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease.

They found that gum disease increases an individual’s risk of cardiovascular disease by about 20 percent.

The Takeaway: Floss daily and brush at least twice a day. See a dentist twice a year. Treating gum disease may lessen the adverse consequences of some chronic systemic conditions, so be sure to make dental health a priority and part of your daily routine.

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