Gum Disease, Systemic links and the Heart

Gum Disease, Systemic links and the Heart

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

Cardiovascular Disease
Gum disease is linked to cardiovascular (heart) problems, which is the number one cause of death worldwide. This is because the bacteria living in the mouth travels through the blood stream and becomes embedded into the walls of the heart, making you more prone to heart problems, such as hypertension.
There is a condition called infective endocarditis which is inflammation of the lining of the heart, which can be serious. If the health of your gums is poor the bacteria from the oral cavity can spontaneously travel to the heart and cause endocarditis.
For further reading and information:
(Persson 2008) (Schenkein 2013) (Seymour 2003)

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