When thinking about February, Valentine’s Day is probably the first thing that comes to mind. However, you have more than one reason to be thinking about hearts. This is Heart Health Month. There is no better time to learn more about how the health of your smile and heart is related. In order to keep up excellent cardiovascular heart, you need to worry about your oral health as well. Continue reading to learn more about their connection.
Did you know that half of Americans who are over the age of 30 have gum disease at one severity or another? This is an infection of the tissue that surrounds the teeth. When it is left without periodontal disease treatment, you could end up with some serious, irreversible issues. They include gum recession, loose teeth, tooth loss, and bone shrinkage.
Heart disease is a blood vessel disorder that can lead to a heart attack if the blood flow is blocked. People who are suffering from periodontal disease are three times more likely to experience a heart attack, stroke, or another serious cardiovascular event. It isn’t exactly clear to doctors yet what the exact relationship between the two is, but inflammation that results from periodontitis is a likely contributor.
Gum disease is incredibly common, but it is also easily preventable. Here are some ways that your can keep your gums in healthy shape:
Brushing Twice Daily: You should brush your teeth twice daily in order to remove plaque, food particles, and bacteria from the teeth. Make sure that you are using a soft-bristled toothbrush and a fluoridated toothpaste.
Floss Every Day: Brushing on its own isn’t enough because there are some areas of the mouth where your toothbrush cannot reach. Use dental floss in order to remove plaque and bacteria from between the teeth and beneath the gumline.
Don’t Use Tobacco Products: Smoking doubles your risk of developing gum disease and it is linked to oral cancer. Talk to your doctor, friends, and family about the best ways that you can quit for good.
Visit Your Dentist: You should be seeing your dentist twice a year for checkups. This way, if your dentist notices any signs of periodontal disease, it can be treated early on.
Understand Your Risk: There are multiple factors that could put you at higher risk for developing gum disease, including age, genetics, and diet.
Maintaining good cardiovascular health is just one of the many reasons why your oral health is important. By keeping up a good dental hygiene routine and seeing your dentist, you could even be saving your life.
About the Author
Dr. Robert A. Sue is an experienced dentist who has been working in the oral healthcare field for more than four decades. Currently, he is a proud member of the American Dental Association, California Dental Association, Dental Organization for Conscious Sedation, and San Fernando Valley Dental Society. For more information or to schedule an appointment at his office in Glendale, visit his website or call 818-243-3838.