As we pointed out in a previous article, there are many health conditions that are tied to the state of your mouth. In this article, we'll be looking a little closer at the links between periodontal disease and conditions like heart disease and stroke.
Very strong links have been established between oral health and cardiovascular disease, but researchers are still trying to clarify whether or not there is a cause-and-effect relationship. Evidence appears to be indicating a strong connection between heart disease and chronic inflammation such as what is found in gum disease. This chronic inflammation is tied to the narrowing or blockages of blood vessels, which, in turn, can lead to a stroke or heart attack.
In an article examining a number of related studies, it was pointed out that having gum disease could increase a person's chance of having heart disease by nearly 20%. Another study showed that those with gum disease have nearly double the risk of suffering a stroke than those with healthy gums.
These are significant risk factors and should be enough to drive home the importance of treating periodontal disease for the sake of overall health.
Watch for the signs of gum disease
It's important to keep an eye out for the early signs of gum disease in order to stop it while it is still reversible. Red, swollen gums which bleed when you brush and floss can be the first signs of gingivitis. As this progresses into periodontal disease, the gums will begin to recede and form periodontal pockets, and ultimately the loss of gum and bone tissue that support the teeth.
If you have been diagnosed with gum disease and are seeking treatment, please get in touch with our office to schedule a consultation so that you can get back on the path to good oral health.