Gum Disease, Systemic links and Respiratory Disease

Gum Disease, Systemic links and Respiratory Disease
There are two types of gum disease; they are called gingivitis and periodontitis. These are infections of the mouth caused by bacteria. The mouth contains the highest amount of bacteria in the body; hundreds of different types thrive in its environment. Gum disease is the number one cause of tooth loss in the UK.
The bacteria in the mouth travel throughout the body via inhalation, ingestion and circulation causing adverse effects to it.
Signs and Symptoms of gum disease:
Bleeding
Redness
Swelling
Loose teeth
Drifting to a different position
Gum recession
Bad Breath (Halitosis)
Foul Taste in mouth
Occasionally Discomfort
Symptomless

Respiratory Disease
There are known links between gum disease and respiratory infections, such as bacterial pneumonia.  Poor oral hygiene alone is a causative factor and can worsen existing lung conditions. This is because the oral bacteria are inhaled into the lungs or swallowed causing infection.
For further reading and information:
(Mealey  Periodontology 2000)

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