Tooth Loss and Cardiovascular Complications
|February 11, 2016
While many people link tooth loss to poor dental hygiene and gum disease, not many think of cardiovascular disease when they consider dental care. However, a recent study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology suggests coronary heart disease patients with no teeth faced almost twice the risk of death as those with their teeth intact.
Here’s what your La Jolla dentist wants you to know about the link between periodontal and cardiovascular disease.
Commonality between Periodontal and Cardiovascular Disease
According to the American Heart Association, periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease have a major factor in common. They are both the result of plaque buildup.
Periodontal disease begins with oral bacteria. The oral bacteria form a sticky, colorless film on your teeth and gums called plaque. Without proper dental care, the plaque hardens into tartar. Only your San Diego dentist can remove tartar. Left untreated, eventually the gum disease can cause extensive damage including tooth loss.
Cardiovascular disease is actually a group of heart diseases that include strokes, hypertension (high blood pressure), coronary heart disease (CHD), and myocardial infarction (heart attack). Poor life choices and heredity can lead to many of these medical conditions.
The primary culprit in cardiovascular disease is atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis develops when plaque builds up in your arteries and narrows the walls. This makes it more difficult for blood to flow and can lead to a number of complications and medical problems.
Whether talking to your primary care doctor or to your La Jolla dentist, taking the necessary steps to limit plaque in your mouth and arties is vital to a healthy life.
Takes Steps to Eliminate Plaque in Your Body That Could Lead to Tooth Loss
Both arterial plaque and oral plaque is unhealthy, so it’s smart to know what steps you can take to reduce them. The best way to reduce arterial plaque is to:
- Not smoke
- Reduce cholesterol
- Eat a healthy diet filled with fruits and vegetables
- Get plenty of exercise and sleep
- Minimize alcohol intake
- See your primary care physician annually for a checkup
When it comes to reducing oral plaque, your San Diego dentist recommends these three easy steps:
- Brush your teeth and gums twice a day for two minutes each time using a soft-headed brush
- Floss at least once a day to remove food particles from between teeth
- Visit your dental care professional on a regular basis, generally every six months
It doesn’t make sense to ignore your health – dental or otherwise. Learn what you can do to be your healthiest self to help you avoid Tooth Loss. If you have questions about your oral health and dental care, speak with your La Jolla dentist.