Heart Disease is the No.1. killer of American adults. Studies confirm an important connection between cardiovascular disease and dental health. Researchers say that it is still unclear if bad dental health directly contributes to heart problems. With that in mind, studies show that periodontal disease can increase the probability of a first heart attack by 28%. That is why your dentist and your Indianapolis periodontist should be taking your blood pressure to gauge your heart health.
How Does Periodontal Disease Influence Heart Health?
Periodontal disease, otherwise known as gum disease, is a bacterial infection. Researchers theorize that gum disease encourages bacteria to enter the bloodstream. They then fasten on fatty deposits in the blood vessels. This situation can lead to blood clots and heart attacks.
How Can Taking My Blood Pressure at the Dentist Help Prevent Heart Problems?
People do not see their doctor as often as they visit their dentist. Because of that, twice a year dental cleanings are a great opportunity for your dentist to check your blood pressure. By checking, your dentist can determine if you suffer from hypertension, or high blood pressure. Hypertension is a key factor leading to cardiovascular disease; but most adults who have high blood pressure are unaware.
What Can I Do to Prevent High Blood Pressure and Gum Disease?
Daily healthy habits will diminish the risks associated with high blood pressure while also lowering your risk of gum disease.
- Maintain a healthy diet: Cut sugar and starches while eating a diet rich in nutrients like Vitamins A and C.
- Brush and Floss Daily: A regular dental regimen will remove plaque-forming bacteria. If left alone, these bacteria can be the start of periodontal disease. Brush twice a day for two minutes in light circular motions.Flossing will remove the particles that brushing cannot reach.
- Don’t smoke or use tobacco products.
- If you see the early stages of gum disease, schedule an appointment with your Fishers periodontist to prevent it from getting worse.
Having your dentist take your blood pressure is a valuable step in monitoring your heart health. With the strong link between heart health, periodontal disease, and health, research continues to support regular dental visits and cleanings. If you are in the Fishers and Indianapolis areas, get your gums checked out by our periodontists. Let us help you keep your teeth and body healthy!