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The Link Between Heart & Gum Diseases

The human body is a single unit composed of  many different systems.  However, did you know that a problem with almost any of its parts can, and does, have profound effects in multiple areas?

There is convincing evidence of an indirect link between periodontitis (inflammatory gum disease) and changes in blood vessels that cause cardiovascular (heart and related blood vessels) disease.

  

The healthier you keep your mouth and body, the better your chances of reducing your risk for both periodontal and heart disease.

  

There are also factors that seem to be common to both periodontal and heart disease, which make some individuals susceptible to both types of disease.

Periodontal (gum) disease is associated with the entry of bacteria from inflamed gum tissues into the bloodstream.  Moderate to severe periodontitis does appear to increase a person's risk for cardiovascular disease.  Today we also believe that reducing inflammation in the periodontal (gum) tissue may affect the progression of cardiovascular (heart and blood vessel) disease and its outcome. However, we cannot say that periodontitis actually causes heart disease.

One thing is for sure, we can change and control external factors; good oral hygiene to reduce bacteria along with periodontal therapy and good diet and exercise for cardiovascular health. The healthier you keep your mouth and body, the better your chances of reducing your risk for both gum and heart disease.