Link Between Oral Health and Heart Disease

Ongoing research continues to suggest that oral health, and gum disease in particular, is related to serious conditions like heart disease.

heartteeth1According to the American Academy of Periodontology, people with periodontal disease are almost twice as likely to have coronary artery disease (also called heart disease). One study found that the presence of common problems in the mouth, including gum disease (gingivitis), cavities, and missing teeth, were as good at predicting heart disease as cholesterol levels.

Researchers continue to gather data suggesting that more and more diseases, including periodontal disease, heart disease, and arthritis, are partially caused by the body’s own inflammatory response. Inflammation is one of the body’s natural responses to infection. It is possible that oral bacteria travel through the body, and trigger a similar response, causing the blood cells to swell. This swelling could then narrow an artery and increase the risk of clots. Chronic inflammation might also lead to hardening of the arteries, which can lead to heart attacks and stroke.

Practicing good oral health, including teeth cleaning and flossing, gets rid of bacteria in the mouth that can lead to chronic infection and inflammation. A large study linking professional teeth cleaning to lower risk of heart attack and stroke revealed that people who had their teeth professionally scaled at least once every two years were 24% less likely to have a heart attack, compared with those who skipped the hygienist. People who had more than one cleaning a year had the lowest risk of heart attack and stroke.

Call our office today to schedule your routine dental cleaning and checkup. We will make recommendations for preventing periodontal disease. If you have advanced periodontal disease, we can do a thorough cleaning of the roots of the teeth, called scaling and root planing.

If you are looking for a dentist in the Troy and Birmingham area who utilizes the latest dental techniques and technology, be sure to check out Dr. Douglas Angell. Angell’s Dentistry is committed to providing each of our patients with a beautiful, healthy smile and unmatched dental care. Give our office a call at (248) 362-4330 and be sure to visit our website at:

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