Important Health Links
Researchers are providing more evidence each day of an important connection between your overall health and your oral health. Here are just some of the ways in which periodontal disease (gum disease) may affect other conditions you have or those that you might develop.
With heart disease and stroke, the facts are compelling. People with periodontal disease are almost twice as likely to suffer from coronary artery disease as those with disease-free gums. One study found that 85% of heart patients studied had periodontal disease. The most likely explanation is that somehow plaque and oral bacteria find their way into the blood stream and contribute to the thickening of the walls of the coronary arteries.
Diabetics are more likely to have gum disease than most people. The infections caused by gum disease make it more difficult for the diabetic to control bloodsugar levels and control infections.
The connection is clear with regard to premature birth. Pregnant women who have periodontal disease may be as much as seven times more likely to have a baby born too early. Why? Some research suggests that gum disease may increase levels of the biological fluids that induce labor.
There is also evidence that periodontal disease contributes to respiratory diseases and osteoporosis.
Simply put, periodontal health is a top priority for your overall continuing health.