Exploring Two Health Conditions Associated with Gum Disease

Exploring Two Health Conditions Associated with Gum Disease

Jul 01, 2023

Gum or periodontal disease is a potentially serious oral condition that affects the supporting tissues of the teeth, like the gums. Gum disease is often associated with poor oral hygiene. Insufficient brushing and flossing allow bacterial plaque and tartar to build up in the mouth.

Over time, these deposits release harmful acids that erode teeth and irritate gum tissues leading to tooth decay, sensitivity, gum recession, and gum inflammation. If not treated promptly, these issues can lead to additional complications like bone loss and tooth loss.

Even worse, recent studies have shown a significant connection between periodontal disease and serious health conditions. This article discusses the impact of gum disease on your health and its connection with cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. You’ll also get practical tips for caring for your mouth to promote optimal oral and overall health.

The Connection Between Gum Disease and Cardiovascular Diseases

The cardiovascular system is the blood circulation system that includes the blood, blood vessels, and the heart. It aids in delivering oxygen and nutrients and removing waste products to ensure overall functionality and health.

Cardiovascular diseases refer to the conditions that affect your cardiovascular system, including coronary artery disease, stroke, and heart attacks. Recent studies have found a compelling link between advanced gum disease and cardiovascular diseases. It can happen in various ways, including:

  • Inflammation. The periodontal bacteria that cause gum disease can trigger a significant immune response, leading to an inflammation that can spread systematically throughout the body, contributing to the progression or development of cardiovascular diseases.
  • Bacterial spread. The bacteria associated with gum disease can enter the bloodstream to other body parts, including the cardiovascular system, leading to issues like arterial plaque and narrowed blood vessels. This increases the risk of developing heart attacks, strokes, and other complications.

Treating or managing gum disease can promote healthy gums and help lower your risk of cardiovascular diseases and other conditions.

The Connection Between Gum Disease and Diabetes

Diabetes is a potentially serious metabolic disorder characterized by elevated blood sugar levels. Emerging evidence has shown a two-way relationship between gum disease and diabetes, including:

  • Gum disease can worsen or increase the risk of diabetes. Periodontal disease can trigger an inflammatory response in the body, which can affect glucose regulation and cause insulin resistance and higher blood glucose levels, leading to an increased risk of developing or worsening diabetes.
  • Diabetes can worsen or increase the risk of gum disease. Uncontrolled diabetes can significantly weaken your body’s ability to fight infections like periodontal infection, increasing the risk of developing or progressing gum disease.

Effectively managing gum disease and diabetes can promote well-being and reduce your risk of these conditions. Visit our office for preventive dentistry near you.

Tips for Optimal Oral and Overall Health

Maintaining optimal oral health is crucial for preventing gum disease and associated health conditions like cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Below are practical preventive measures to keep in mind:

  • Proper oral hygiene. Daily brushing and flossing are essential to remove bacterial plaque and tartar buildup on the teeth and along the gum line, stopping or preventing gum disease and other complications. Use fluoride toothpaste and invest in a soft-bristled toothbrush.
  • Regular dental check-ups. Regular dental checkups help the dentist identify and address potential oral problems before they worsen. Regular dental cleanings also help remove hardened bacterial deposits to reduce the risk of gum disease and health problems.
  • Lifestyle modifications. A healthy lifestyle like avoiding tobacco and alcohol use and exercising can promote oral and overall health.
  • Eat a well-balanced and healthy diet. Eating nutrient-rich foods like fish, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and nuts can help promote a healthy mouth and overall well-being.
  • Managing gum disease. Treating gum disease promptly can help minimize the risk of complications. If you have gum disease, your dentist near you can recommend gum disease treatments like deep cleaning, gum flap surgery, and gum grafts.
  • Managing underlying conditions. Promptly treating and managing hypertension, diabetes, and high cholesterol can reduce your risk of gum disease and health conditions.

Visit Our Office for Preventive Dentistry in Shalimar

Do you have untreated gum disease or health conditions? Contact Complete Health Dentistry of the Emerald Coast for more information.

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