Periodontal Disease & Your Health


Periodontal Disease and Your Health

Every year, more than 600,000 Americans are killed by heart disease, making it the leading cause of death in the United States. February is American Heart Month, an effort to raise awareness of heart health and shrink this devastatingly large death toll. Dental problems and periodontal disease, have been known to correlate with heart disease, a theory that has been suggested by doctors for more than a century, so maintaining proper oral hygiene is a must for maintaining a healthy heart.

An American Heart Association committee—after reviewing 500 journal articles and studies—suggest there is no proof of gum disease actually causing a heart attack or a stroke, but the two still share many similar risk factors, including:

  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Stress
  • Heredity
  • Underlying immuno-deficiencies such as AIDS
  • Female hormonal changes, such as with pregnancy or the use of oral contraceptives

The AHA concluded that while people with periodontal dental problems are almost twice as likely to experience a heart attack, the connection is probably just a coincidence. Typically, individuals who do not pay attention to avoiding risk factors such as smoking or high blood pressure may not pay close attention to their oral health either.

Making a dental appointment once a year, at an office such as Winter Garden Smiles, will help prevent heart disease from occurring.

A common theory linking periodontal problems and heart disease is mouth bacteria entering the bloodstream during dental procedures and regular brushings. Mouth bacteria attach to fatty deposits in arteries and form blood clots. Another theory indicates that because mouth bacteria from gum disease are a source of inflammation, the same effect occurs in artery walls.

Dental problems involving periodontitis and gingivitis develop in ages as early as teens and young adults. Due to unstable hormones from puberty, gum tissue is prone to inflammation. Girls are also more susceptible to gingivitis during their pre-menstrual cycle because of changing estrogen levels. Extra dental care and visiting an Orlando family dental office will help prevent future dental problems.

Although a long-term study still needs to be conducted to prove periodontal disease causes heart disease, good oral hygiene is still a necessary foundation for overall health. Scheduling an appointment with Winter Garden Smiles is the first step in preventing periodontal disease. Our dentists will give you a beautiful and happy smile you’ll proudly show off. Give us a call at Winter Garden Smiles Phone Number (407) 614-5955 or complete an appointment request form on our website today!