It’s no surprise that cardiovascular disease is a primary cause of disability, globally. What might come as a surprise, though, is that inflammation is closely related to the development of this detrimental disease. Furthermore, inflammation and periodontitis are closely related. Therefore, according to mountains of research, periodontitis has been proven to be a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and atherosclerosis.
Periodontal Disease and Its Effect On the Body
Patients should be aware that their oral health will not only impact their periodontal health but their cardiovascular health as well. Experts believe that people who have periodontal disease are actually two to three times as likely to experience either a stroke, heart attack, or other cardiovascular events. Consequently, they should be encouraged to adopt a healthy habit of proper oral hygiene that includes both daily brushings to remove plaque, as well as regular visits to the dentist to have professional dental cleanings.
Inflammation and Its Effect On the Body
Chronic inflammation within the body has been a focus of medical professionals more and more in recent years. While inflammation can be brought on by various conditions, experts have discovered that gum disease, or periodontal issues, are in fact a source of inflammation that can have dire consequences throughout the rest of the body. Therefore, this fact alone is enough cause for dental professionals to encourage good oral health in all their patients.
Periodontal disease comes along with chronic inflammation. In fact, according to a Harvard specialist, “periodontal disease increases the body’s burden of inflammation.” This inflammation, which is associated with periodontitis, is subsequently distributed throughout the rest of the body by periodontal pathogens and bacteremia. This bacterium then enters the bloodstream, including the atherosclerotic lesions, which leads to build up in the arteries. Therefore, many believe that pristine oral health will lead to an overall healthier cardiovascular system.
Unfortunately, explaining the correlation between poor oral health and periodontitis is not enough to prevent a patient from having a heart attack. In other words, even if a patient has excellent oral health and no sign of periodontitis, this is no guarantee they will not ever suffer from a heart-related condition.
On the other hand, dental professionals can tell if a strong relationship between heart disease and gum disease or periodontitis does exist. This fact alone should encourage dental patients to prioritize their oral health. After all, who wouldn’t want to cut down their risk for poor cardiovascular health if they could?
What Patients Should Look For to Indicate Periodontitis
You can actively protect yourself from periodontal disease by being on the lookout for the following symptoms:
- Changes in the way dental appliances fit
- Teeth that are moving apart or loose teeth
- Hard deposits, often brown in color, located along the gum line
- Bad breath
- Pus between gums and teeth
- Gums that bleed easily
- Tender, red or swollen gums
Daily tooth brushing and flossing can prevent gum disease from progressing in its early stages. Untreated, early-stage gum disease or gingivitis can advance into the serious periodontal condition outlined above. Anyone who suspects they may have periodontitis or gum disease should see a periodontist immediately.
It’s important for any patient who believes they might be experiencing this condition or any other oral issue to seek treatment quickly in order to prevent the disease from progressing and eventually negatively impacting their heart health. Contact the caring professionals at Vero Implants and Periodontics today to set up your consultation and be on the way to pristine oral health!