Dentist View on Consequences of Gum Diseases

Dr. Parvin Carter


Gum disease has been linked to:

 Heart attack, strokeAlzheimer diseasePancreatic cancer,  Pneumonia, Respiratory Tract Infection,Breast cancerDiabetes Knee arthritis, Premature birth, and  low birth weight (PLBW) babies. 

During my 30 years of practicing dentistry, I have developed the ability of looking at a patient’s dental health and tell, in general, whether the person is healthy overall. I have sent many of my patients, who had no idea about their general health, to a physician and in many cases they have come back and thanked me for saving their lives.

Research has shown that periodontal disease is associated with several other diseases.

Studies also suggest that oral bacteria and the inflammation associated with periodontitis — a severe form of gum disease — might play a role in some diseases. In addition, certain diseases, such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS, can lower the body’s resistance to infection, making oral health problems more severe.

How does gum disease results to other health problems?

For a long time it was thought that bacteria was the only factor that linked periodontal disease to other disease in the body; however, more recent research demonstrates that gum inflammation may be responsible for the association. Therefore, treating inflammation may not only help manage periodontal diseases but may also help with the management of other chronic inflammatory conditions.Bacteria can get into the bloodstream and circulate to your heart and different parts of the body.

Lack of oral health might result to the following diseases:

Your oral health might affect, be affected by, or contribute to various diseases and conditions, including:

  • Endocarditis. Endocarditis is an infection of the inner lining of your heart (endocardium). Endocarditis typically occurs when bacteria or other germs from another part of your body, such as your mouth, spread through your bloodstream and attach to damaged areas in your heart.
  • Cardiovascular disease. Some research suggests that heart disease, clogged arteries and stroke might be linked to the inflammation and infections that oral bacteria can cause.
  • Pregnancy and birth. Periodontitis has been linked to premature birth and low birth weight.
  • Diabetes. Diabetes reduces the body’s resistance to infection — putting the gums at risk. Gum disease appears to be more frequent and severe among people who have diabetes. Research shows that people who have gum disease have a harder time controlling their blood sugar levels.
  • HIV/AIDS. Oral problems, such as painful mucosal lesions, are common in people who have HIV/AIDS.
  • Osteoporosis. Osteoporosis — which causes bones to become weak and brittle — might be linked with periodontal bone loss and tooth loss.
  • Alzheimer’s disease. Tooth loss before age 35 might be a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Pancreatic cancer. Periodontal disease may increase the risk of pancreatic cancer. This finding is of significance as it may provide some new insights into the mechanism of this highly fatal disease.
  • Other conditions. Other conditions that might be linked to oral health include Sjogren’s syndrome — an immune system disorder that causes dry mouth — and eating disorders.
  • Birth Weight (PLBW) babies According to studies done by Department of Social and Pediatric Dentistry, School of Dentistry, Federal University of Juiz de Fora., there is a significant association between periodontal disease and PLBW
  • Respiratory Tract Infection. According to the study published in the January 2011 issue of the Journal of Periodontology suggests a possible link between upper respiratory diseases—including pneumonia,acute bronchitis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)—and periodontal disease.

In dentistry experience and Continuing Education are everything. Dr. Parvin Carter has over 30 years of experience in Practicing General Dentistry and 25 years in Orthodontics. She has thousands of hours of advanced training. In 2000, Academy of General Dentistry awarded Dr. Carter a Certificate of Mastership (MAGD) in General Dentistry. According to the Journal of the Academy of General Dentistry, only 1% of US dentists achieve this high level of advancement. Dr. Carter is a Certified and Preferred Provider of Invisalign. She has successfully treated over 350 patients with Invisalign.

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