Gum disease is of concern in the United States. Recent studies report 3 out of 4 Americans show signs of mild periodontal (gum) disease, an inflammation of the gums also known as gingivitis, and almost 30% of American adults have a more severe type of gum disease, called periodontitis. These statistics are important for you to know, because they highlight how important to give your teeth all the attention they deserve, by brushing and flossing twice a day. Brushing and flossing regularly and properly will not only save your teeth, it will protect your overall health. How?
The inflammation and bacteria caused by gum disease doesn’t stay in your mouth. It can spread throughout your body via your lungs and your blood. By making sure you’re giving your teeth the attention they need, you’ll keep inflammation and bacteria out of your mouth and body, protecting your gums and your heart.
How does gum disease harm your heart?
As the bacteria from your gums moves to other areas in your body, it can cause infection in your internal organs, or cause an existing condition to worsen.
If inflammation enters your body, it causes a systemic inflammatory response. This is normally a good thing. It’s your body’s way of protecting itself against infection by sending nutritious fluids and white blood cells to the infected area to defeat the inflammation and heal the area. If, however, the inflammation spread is chronic, and the systemic inflammatory response continues for a longer period of time, it can cause or contribute to diseases that have an inflammatory origin such as cardiovascular disease.
Look for signs
If you have:
- bleeding gums
- swollen gums
- shifting teeth
- chronic bad breath
- family history of periodontal disease
there’s a good chance you have a problem and you’ll need the help of you San Jose/Los Gatos dentist to solve it.
Your oral health is a critical factor in maintaining your overall health. Often, signs of a system health problem shows up first as a problem within your mouth. That’s why it’s so important to schedule regular dental check-ups with your dentist. They have the training and expertise to see the signs early and catch any problems while they are still small ones.
Do you have any dental questions?
Ask me today and I’ll reply by tomorrow.