Periodontal diseases are infections surrounding the structures of the teeth, including the alveolar bone, periodontal ligament, the cementum covering the root, and the gums. During the earliest periodontal disease stage, only the gums are affected by the infection. It is called gingivitis. In the disease’s more severe forms, it involves all the supporting tissues. The main culprits are the bacteria within the dental plaque. Periodontal disease overall affects around 20% to 50% of the world’s population. To help you prevent gum disease and the below listed diseases associated with it, consult the dentists at Family Dentistry of Lake Worth .
Gum disease in recent years has been linked to certain health issues. However, there are still many unanswered questions that remain. Various findings have been produced by studies regarding the extent of the connection there is between between gum diseases and other types of medical issues. In order to substantiate the findings additional research needs to be done.
Periodontal disease has been linked as the risk factor for some other diseases. They are discussed below:
Cardiovascular disease – Individuals who have periodontal disease have a higher risk of developing heart disease. Some of the most common infecting agents are oral bacteria including streptococcus sanguinis and streptococcus gordonii. Researchers found bacteria in the mouth was able to get into the bloodstream and then stick to platelets. This is then able to form blood clots, which interrupts blood flow into the heart.
Heart conditions like high cholesterol, coronary artery disease, and high blood pressure might be the result of chronic inflammation that periodontal infections cause.
Stroke – Periodontal disease is caused by a complex interplay between the body’s inflammatory response and chronic bacterial infection. Some studies have researched the association between periodontal disease and stroke and found there is a significant association between the two although the evidence of the role that periodontal disease plays in strokes is limited still.
Alzheimer’s disease – Dental researchers from New York University discovered the first long-term evidence showing that periodontal disease might increase risk for cognitive dysfunction that is linked to Alzheimer’s disease in both healthy people and those who are cognitively impaired already. It is suggested by the research that cognitively normal individuals with periodontal inflammation have an increased risk for cognitive function when compared to individuals who are cognitively normal with no or little periodontal inflammation.
Pancreatic cancer – A Harvard School of Public Health research team were the first researchers to report strong evidence back in 2007 on a link between pancreatic cancer and gum disease. It was suggested by the researchers that there might be a link between pancreatic cancer risk and high carcinogenic compound levels found in the mouths of individuals with gum disease. It was argued by the researchers that those compounds – which are referred to as nitrosamines – might react to digestive chemicals inside of the gut in such a way that a favorable environment is created for pancreatic cancer to develop.
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