Here’s what many doctors believe is the connection: even the healthy mouth is full of bacteria. This is kept in check by regular oral maintenance (brushing and flossing). However, when gum disease is present, the bacteria is believed to gain entry into the blood stream and therefore a portal to the entire body.
Here some of the links between disease and gum health:
Researchers have found that people with periodontal disease (gum disease) are almost twice as likely to suffer from coronary pulmonary disease. Other studies suggest that gum disease can also exacerbate existing hearth conditions.
Additional published studies have pointed to the a relationship between periodontal disease and stroke. One study concluded that people have suffered a stroke are much more likely than the control group to suffer from gum disease.
Gum disease has been linked to premature birth. That’s why many experts say it is vital for a woman to maintain excellent oral heath prior to getting pregnant.
People with diabetes are more likely to suffer with gum disease than the general public. This may be because the diabetic is more prone to infection. Severe gum disease can also increase blood sugar levels creating even more complications.
The first stages of bone loss may be first evident in the teeth. Often, this will be discovered with routine dental x-rays. If bone loss continues to occur, the dentist will most likely suggest the patient discuss the problem with other healthcare providers.
Again as shown is some of the above cases, arthritis sufferers have been shown to higher incidence of periodontal disease. One theory suggests that because of the debilitating nature of the disease, the patient is unable to perform the physical movements necessary of oral maintenance.
There is however good news in the battle against gum disease. LANAP (Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure) has become available throughout the United States as a patient-friendly alternative to traditional gum surgery. With LANAP, the trained and certified general dentist or periodontist utilizes a laser (Periolase MVP-7, Millenium Technologies, Inc) to treat gum disease. Unlike traditional gum surgery, LANAP requires no surgical cutting, scaling back the gums, or stitches. This results in much less pain and discomfort for the patient. In addition, it requires much less healing and recovery time.
As shown in the above examples, proper oral maintenance and promptly treating gum disease is a valuable investment in your over-all health.
Photo. Mali Maeder