If a friend or relative has ever had trouble with gum disease, there is a good chance they also experienced other medical problems. Although people often assume dental issues are independent of other conditions, poor oral health can cause whole-body health concerns. Here is a little more information about the link between gum disease and heart health, as well as what you can do to ward off both issues.
How Is Periodontal Disease Linked to Heart Problems?
If you have been diagnosed with gum disease, the bacteria inside your mouth have started to inflame your oral tissues, causing redness, swelling, and even gum recession. Eventually, these bacteria can cause pockets to form underneath the gum line, allowing bacteria to move farther under your gums and seep into your bloodstream.
As these bacteria grow and reproduce, they create toxins that cause systemic inflammation, which is why some researchers suspect heart problems are more common in people with gum disease. In fact, oral bacteria have even been discovered in the arterial plaques that block heart valves. Inflammation can also restrict blood flow, causing issues with the heart.
How Can You Prevent Both Problems?
Fortunately, patients can prevent this inflammation by meeting with their dentist and periodontist regularly. During preventive exams, professionals will clean dental surfaces, removing areas where plaque can take root and cause problems. Patients can also prevent heart disease by eating healthy foods, exercising, brushing, and flossing.
There is a reason medical professionals refer to the mouth as the window to overall wellness. Because more than 120 different conditions show symptoms in the oral cavity, it is crucial to meet with the professionals at Finger Lakes Periodontics and Implant Dentistry for regular periodontal exams. Both Dr. Sean Meitner and Dr. Gabriela Ciornei are committed to excellence in periodontal care, and they will allow you to enjoy a healthier, more comfortable smile. For an appointment to rule out gum disease, send them a note online or call (314) 789-2380.