Wellness Wednesday: How Periodontal Disease Affects the Body

Periodontal disease is known as the “silent killer” of adults of the age of 55 affecting not just the mouth but the entire body.


In the medical field, and certainly the dental field, it has been known for some time that bacteria in the mouth can affect the functioning of the rest of the body. For example, patients who have had surgeries where a bone replacement was made, or they have metal pieces or screws in them, must take an antibiotic orally before even the most minor dental procedures. This reduces the chance that the body becomes infected from the bacteria that is in the mouth.

Other studies have found an even bigger link between the body and the mouth:

The same plaque found between your teeth is the plaque that is found in the arteries near the heart,Periodontal disease is pregnant women is linked to pre-term births,Patients who are diabetic are now eligible for additional dental cleanings each year from most insurance companies due to the high risk of infection that diabetic patients have and the high levels of bacteria that are typically found in diabetic patients,Most recently, periodontal disease has been linked to several cancers, most notably, the irreversible Pancreatic Cancer.

               


From the American Academy of Physicians

Many people can assume that periodontal disease (gum disease) leads to a loss of teeth.  They would be correct. And if the loss of one’s teeth isn’t enough, the impact that has on the body is immense.

Studies show that the more teeth someone has lost, the sooner they will die. This is a harsh reality and the result of decades of research. Those who have 4 or fewer missing teeth can expect to shave ten years off of their life.

Author
Dr. Owyoung Andrew Owyoung, DDS, has been providing comprehensive family dental care for 29 years to the Sacramento area. Widely considered a top dentist in Sacramento, the staff at Soft Touch Dentistry are equipped with the knowledge, experience, and equipment to deliver an unparalleled dental experience.

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