You might be surprised to know what the state of your mouth says about your total wellness. When you have gum disease, the chances of developing or aggravating the following conditions may increase.
- Lung Disease
- Premature Childbirth
- Heart Disease
How does Gum Disease relate to the Heart?
Some studies show a correlation between gum disease and heart disease. If you have gum disease, you may be twice as likely to experience a heart condition.
Periodontitis or (advanced gum disease) is caused by a buildup of bacteria that has reached deep under the gum line. This infection causes an immune response that may increase inflammation and the deterioration of the soft-tissue supporting your teeth and may eventually result in the loss of teeth if not treated early enough.
How Oral Bacteria Reaches the Heart
Most scientists who have studied this relationship agree that the most likely path oral bacteria takes to reach other parts of the body is through blood vessels. Because of lesions caused by gum disease, bacteria from the mouth can pass through the broken barrier of soft tissue that normally protects the rest of the body from infection.
When oral bacteria enter the bloodstream, it can trigger an inflammation response that leads to the accumulation of arterial plaque. The movement of plaque and narrowing of arteries can then cause heart attacks and strokes.
How to Protect Your Oral Health and Your Heart
Prioritizing your smile is a must to support your overall health and prevent dental dilemmas. The following signs and symptoms indicate early or progressive periodontal disease.
- Red, swollen, or tender gums
- Bleeding while brushing or flossing
- Receding gums that cause teeth to look longer
- Loose teeth
- Pockets forming between the gums and teeth
- Sores in the mouth
- Persistent bad breath
- A change in the fit or feel of dental restorations
If you suspect you have early or advancing gum disease, see your dentist immediately as prompt attention is essential.
Windsor Park Dental is dedicated to helping you achieve a healthy smile that supports both your physical body and your self-confidence. Call us today for more information and to schedule a checkup.