The Unintended Consequences Of Poor Oral Hygiene
Tooth loss due to gum disease is degrading, unhealthy, and unattractive. But there are other, more deadly, consequences of gum disease. Recent studies show that gum disease has a strong link to heart disease. In an ongoing study in Sweeden, it was found that it was much more common for first-time heart attack patients to have gum disease than a group of healthy people. The risk of a cardiac event rose in severity as gum disease progressed.
A follow-up study investigated the relationship between gum disease and heart attacks (a form of heart disease). The study followed 1,600 patients with an average age of 62 for four years. During dental exams, it was found that 985 had good oral health, 489 had moderate periodontitis, and 113 had advanced periodontal disease. After six years, the study showed that people with gum disease were 49% more likely to die of any cause, have a non-fatal heart attack or stroke, or develop heart failure.
Researchers believe that when bacteria damages your gums, it allows for germs to perpetrate the rest of your body through your bloodstream, accelerating destructive changes to blood vessels and harming the vessels through systematic inflammation.
Gum disease has other deadly consequences too. Research has shown that gum disease has links to several other diseases.
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Respiratory Diseases
- Increased cancer risk
- Erectile dysfunction