How Dentists Prevent Heart Disease… In Just 44 Minutes!
Untreated periodontal disease and decay in and around the mouth is like having an open wound the size of a hand; it’s invisible because it’s under the gums. Periodontal disease, usually called Gum Disease, is a chronic infection involving about 500 different kinds of bacteria that can affect heart disease. The way it works is that chronic infections may trigger a chain of chemical events that cause inflammation, or swelling, throughout the body. When plaque lining the arteries causes them to becomes inflamed, blood clots can form, leading to heart attack or stroke.
Say “Ahhh” to Avoid Heart Disease
For the past decade, several studies have concluded that there is a strong link between periodontal disease and coronary heart disease. One result of periodontal disease is the loss of teeth. When the gums become so diseased, your teeth can wiggle out. This led researchers in Finland to investigate the associations between the number of missing teeth and diagnosed heart disease in 1,384 men aged 45 to 64 years. The researchers discovered that those with a higher number of missing teeth from sustained oral infections–which is a direct result of periodontal disease — had a higher likelihood of heart disease.
In one study, men with extensive gum disease were more than four times as likely to develop heart disease (the nation’s leading cause of death) than men with healthy gums. Another study involving Arizona’s Pima Indians, who rarely smoke, showed those with gum disease were more than twice as likely to suffer a heart attack than those whose gums were healthy.
Periodontal disease is the most common chronic infectious disease in the world, more common than the cold. Population surveys and studies done in the United States indicate that more than 50 percent of adults have gingivitis and 30 percent have periodontitis, according to the American Academy of Periodontology. The problem increases with age.
The bottom line is that periodontal disease may be far more serious threat to your health than previously realized. To save your heart, take action now to protect your gums.