The Mouth-Body Connection
Research has shown associations between periodontal disease and other chronic conditions like diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, and osteoporosis. Along with plaque, smoking and diabetes directly increase your risk for periodontal disease.
Periodontal disease is characterized by presence of disease-causing bacteria, causing infection below the gum line and inflammation of the gum tissue. Bacteria in your mouth can gain access to your bloodstream. Inflammation in your mouth increases the total inflammation in your body. Therefore, maintaining excellent oral hygiene and reducing the progression of periodontal disease through treatment may have health benefits beyond preventing gum disease and bone loss.
Associations have been found between periodontal disease and the following conditions, to name a few:
- Heart disease
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Respiratory disease