Periodontitis Linked to Strokes
The Marconi Dental Group wants you to be aware that scientists, dentists and doctors continue to find links between infections of the gums, commonly called gum disease, and serious forms of illness. The most dangerous stage of gum disease is periodontitis. This dental problem, often ignored by patients, has been linked to the following complications:
- Heart disease,
- Early births.
An additional potential complication of chronic periodontitis is strokes. Stroke is an attack on the tissues of the brain, usually caused by a ruptured or clogged blood vessel. Strokes are potentially caused by the inflammation and destructive effect of the same oral bacteria that create gum recession and tooth decay.
Neuro Endocrinology Letters writes in a 2013 study that the “presence of chronic destructive inflammation in the mouth – a region with rich blood supply, contributes to escape of bacteria, their virulent factors and various pro-inflammatory cells.” These three factors, when present in the blood vessels, can lead to atherosclerosis. The doctors involved in the study point out that atherosclerosis, the same disease that clogs the arteries to the heart, also clogs the arteries to the brain. Just as clogged cardiac arteries can create heart attacks, clogged cerebral arteries can lead to strokes.
Atherosclerosis — Does It Only Affect Your Brain and Heart?
The entire body needs a continual supply of blood, carried by your arteries. Clogging those arteries via atherosclerosis can lead to complications in many parts of the body, not just your brain and your heart. While those organs are absolutely vital, so we acutely notice damage to them, researchers have also linked atherosclerosis to back pain, sexual dysfunction and other commonly reported aches and health issues.
Consider the Facts About Periodontitis
Certainly, other factors, such as a diet high in fat and cholesterol, a lack of exercise and smoking, contribute to clogged arteries. This additional factor — complications due to gum disease — should not be ignored and has a simple solution. Regularly brushing and flossing your teeth, at least twice daily, and regular visits to your dentist, at least twice yearly, can keep chronic periodontitis away and ordinary gum disease in check. Our convenient Sacramento dental office stands ready to help you protect your health by keeping your teeth and gums healthy!