Gum Disease and Cardiovascular Issues

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Although you may be aware that gum disease can cause problems for your mouths, such as loose teeth, bad breath, and receding gums; did you know that gum disease can also cause problems for your heart?

Gum disease causes your gums to swell, and that admits bacteria into your system. While the infection may be most noticeable in your mouth, that bacteria can spread to your bloodstream, which will put your cardiovascular system, including your heart at risk. As the infection travels through your blood, it can cause atherosclerosis, which is a hardening of the arteries. This condition allows plaque to build upon the walls of your arteries, which can restrict the flow of blood to your heart. This places you at a higher risk of a heart attack or for a stroke. The heart itself can be affected. As the infection enters the heart, the result can be endocarditis. This condition is characterized by an inflammation of the walls of your heart. Patients who already suffer from heart disease are already at risk for endocarditis. If you have heart disease or any medical condition, you should make sure that your dentist is up-to-date with your medical records. Some medical conditions may determine your course of treatment.

Cardiovascular problems make up one facet of the complications of gum disease. To prevent gum disease, you should brush at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, floss once a day, and see your dentist for your regular appointments.

If you have red, swollen, tender or bleeding gums, loose teeth, or chronic bad breath, you should make an appointment to see our dentist, Dr. Eric Eidbo to be checked for gum disease. If ignored, the problem could reach far beyond your mouth. To schedule a visit at Oak Grove Dental in Concord, California call 925-685-2286 today.