Importance of Oral Health for the Heart
While you may think that your oral health only affects areas such as your mouth, teeth, and gums, it is being found that there is a link between oral health and diseases and conditions that affect other areas of your body, including the heart.
Harmful bacteria that is commonly found in the mouth has been shown to increase the risk of blood clots and the formation of plaque along the walls of blood vessels, which can lead to an increased risk of heart attack or stroke. The same harmful bacteria can also cause an infection of the inner lining of the heart called endocarditis.
With poor oral hygiene, these bacteria build up in the mouth and can lead to periodontal gum disease. As bleeding in the gums occurs and tissues break down, the bacteria get into the blood stream with activities such as chewing or brushing the teeth. Once in the blood, these bacteria can travel anywhere, including the heart.
To reduce the risk of bacterial buildup and periodontal gum disease, brush teeth twice a day and floss daily. Be sure to see your dentist for regular exams and professional cleanings to reach areas you cannot at home. If needed, your dentist can also treat any gum disease issues.
Our North Hollywood dentist can provide a thorough exam and cleaning, as well as recommendations for additional treatments if necessary to keep your mouth healthy and prevent heart trouble caused by oral health problems.
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