Being the entrance of the body. Mouth and dental hygiene greatly impact a person’s overall health. A person’s smile is often the first thing others notice about them, so it is important to take care of one’s oral health. Dentists often ask their patients to complete a medical history to be aware of potential problems.
You have the highest risk for heart conditions due to poor oral and dental care if you have chronic gum conditions such as gingivitis or advanced periodontal disease. This is especially true if it remains undiagnosed and unmanaged. The bacteria associated with gum infection inside your mouth can enter your bloodstream, where they attach to vessels and increase your risk for heart diseases.
Even if you don’t have visible gum inflammation or tooth decay, inadequate oral hygiene and accumulated plaque still put you at risk for gum disease. The bacteria can also migrate into your bloodstream, causing elevated C-reactive protein, a marker for inflammation in the blood vessels. This can up your chances of contracting heart disease and stroke.
Well, researchers believe that the bacteria from your gums can enter your bloodstream and contribute to the formation of clots, causing a heart attack. While this requires more study to verify this connection, taking care of your dental health is still important to reduce your risk of heart disease.
Inflammation in the mouth can cause cardiovascular problems. One theory is that oral bacteria can enter the bloodstream and attach to fatty plaques in the coronary arteries, leading to clot formation. This can block normal blood flow and restrict the number of nutrients and oxygen the heart needs to function properly, potentially leading to a heart attack.
Another method is periodontal disease, a serious gum infection that can cause inflammation and swelling. This can lead to clotting of the arteries, which can cause heart attacks and other serious heart problems.
A typical health care provider can test your blood for C-reactive protein levels. This protein is found in your blood when you have inflammation. If you have periodontitis, this protein will be present at high levels. The same is true for people who have cardiovascular disease. By treating periodontal disease, you can lower the levels of this protein. This could help to prevent cardiovascular events.
Some bacteria found in periodontal disease can break down the tissues that hold the teeth in place. These can enter the bloodstream and travel to the heart, where they can cause the formation of plaque on the vessel walls. This plaque can block blood flow, leading to a heart attack or stroke.
Your dental and heart health are closely related. Studies have found that periodontal disease is a risk factor for coronary artery disease. Be sure to tell your dentist and hygienist about your heart health, so they can provide the best possible care.
Make sure to talk to your dentist at your next visit about your oral health and how it affects your overall health! Your heart will thank you!
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