There is absolutely no disagreeing to the fact that a healthy mouth is of extreme importance. However, does that also mean that it leads to a healthy heart?
As a child, you learn that brushing and flossing teeth are very important if you want to evade tooth decay and have healthy gums. The idea of a relationship between oral health and the heart has been around for over a century now.
However, it's only been in the last 20 years that a few health authorities have taken this relationship seriously enough to endorse dental care as a means of reduction in the danger of heart diseases.
Dr. Ann Bolger, M.D. and William Watt Kerr Professor of Clinical Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, believes that the oral cavity can be a good warning signpost for the presence of an underlying heart condition. It is believed that there is a link between serious gum diseases and atherosclerosis, which can lead to heart disease. Atherosclerosis is the depositing of fatty deposits along the lining of the artery walls, which could lead to the formation of blood clots; it's also acknowledged as toughening of the arteries.
However to date, the data supporting this knowledge has always been debatable. So the American Heart Association (AHA) reviewed the existing research to see what the evidence suggested. The Association's review came to a conclusion that even though a linkage was "biologically conceivable", there is no clear suggestion that gum disease could lead to heart disease, or that treating gum disease would in any a way have any consequence on those people with a heart condition.
Gum diseases, such as periodontitis, and heart disease have common risk factors such as age, diabetes and smoking. Granting that these pooled risk factors could clarify why diseases of the blood vessels and oral cavity can occur simultaneously, there is some data that suggest that there could be an autonomous relationship between these two diseases.
Gum disease affects 80% of Indian adults and many a times, a condition like this can go unidentified. Cautionary signs that you may have a gum disease include:
- Bright red, tender to touch or swollen gums
- Bleeding gums when you are brushing or flossing
- Gums that seem to be moving away from your teeth
- Persistent unpleasant breath or a foul taste in your mouth
- Teeth that are wobbly or moving away from each other
The finest way to be preemptive in sustaining your oral and complete health is
- Scheduling semi-annual dental checkups.
- Getting professional cleanings and going in for regular brushing and flossing.
Here's what is advised by doctors for people to lower their risk of heart disease by established methods, which are as follows:
- Quit smoking
- Manage body weight
- Control blood pressure
- Regular exercise
Therefore, taking strides to halt gum disease at the source is the finest method to maintain a unique and beautiful smile at any age.
This article is written by Dr. Aarti Sharma-Kapila, GM-Quality and Dental Administration, Clove Dental.