Five Serious Health Conditions Linked to Gum Disease
By Ann R. Sielicki, DDS on March 22, 2019
According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of every two Americans aged 30 and over has some form of gum disease. Also known as periodontal disease, gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss and is a result of bacterial growth in the mouth. If left untreated, the oral bacteria can travel to other parts of the body and lead to serious health conditions.
Here, Sonoran Dental Design, a top Scottsdale dental practice, reveals five serious health conditions connected to gum disease.
Numerous studies have found that gum disease can increase the risk of heart disease. The cause-and-effect relationship between the two diseases has not been proven as of now but scientists believe that the inflammation caused by gum disease may be responsible for the correlation. Gum disease can also exacerbate certain existing heart conditions. According to the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP), gum disease patients who are at risk for infective endocarditis may require antibiotics prior to dental procedures.
Several studies have found that gum disease may make it difficult for diabetics to control their blood sugar, which can lead to an array of complications. What’s more, the relationship between diabetes and gum disease goes both ways — diabetics are more likely to develop gum disease that non-diabetics.
Researchers believe that infection in the gums triggers inflammation throughout the body, which can potentially promote the growth of cancer. According to the AAP, researchers have found that men with gum disease are 54 percent more likely to develop pancreatic cancer, 49 percent more likely to develop kidney cancer and 30 percent more likely to develop blood cancers.
Bacterial growth in the mouth can spread to the lungs and lead to respiratory complications, including pneumonia. Although pneumonia is very treatable, over 50,000 Americans die from the disease each year.
According to the AAP, one study found that individuals diagnosed with acute cerebrovascular ischemia are more likely to have an oral infection than their counterparts.
Scheduling routine dental exams and cleanings is crucial for a healthy and happy mouth. To book an appointment with Sonoran Dental Design, please contact our Scottsdale office today.
“Dr. Sielicki and her staff are professional and I immediately felt comfortable. My teeth look fantastic. I could not be more pleased with the outcome.” Emily