It’s a New Year and the common trend at Dr. Gary Michaelson’s office is surrounded around self-improvement. Everywhere you look, there are ads for weight loss and getting healthy. What most people don’t think about is how the condition of the mouth, particularly the condition of the gums, affects a person’s overall health.
The Gum Disease-Heart Link
Periodontal disease, or gum disease, has a direct link to heart disease. Multiple research studies of heart patients have reported an 85% history of periodontal disease. The bacteria originating from under the gums will make its way into the bloodstream, potentially thickening artery walls. The same bacteria can also combine with platelets to form blood clots that clog the heart. Recent data shows that 40% of the bacteria found in the artery walls of stroke victims are from bacteria associated with periodontal disease.
Diabetes is another disease linked to periodontal disease. The high level of aggressive bacteria in patients with gum disease can make it hard to control blood-sugar levels. Interestingly enough as well, it’s also been reported that diabetics are more prone to periodontal disease. Perhaps this is due to a weakened immune system as well as a delay in healing found in diabetics.
Newer research is linking periodontal disease to respiratory disease and osteoporosis. Additionally, women with gum disease are at a higher risk of having premature labor or low birth weight babies. There is no denying that keeping the mouth healthy is a must to accomplish overall health!
Get an Exam with Your Orlando Dentist
Many disease and conditions have early indicators that can appear in the mouth first. At Alafaya Center for Cosmetic and Family Dentistry, we take the mouth-body connection seriously and are committed to early diagnosis and intervention. Dr. Gary Michaelson and his team partner with patients to help them achieve and maintain optimal dental and overall health. Start the New Year off with a thorough exam and a plan toward wellness!