According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost half of all Americans, or 64.7 million people, suffer from some stage of gum disease. The prevalence of the condition has led to a kind of apathy among patients. Bleeding, swollen gums are commonplace, and therefore often ignored because the symptoms often stop there. However, there are some dangerous side effects associated with gum disease that may help you pick up your tooth brush and floss more regularly.
1. Memory Problems
Current research suggests that there is a causal link between poor oral health and an increased chance of dementia. Researchers and doctors believe that the bacteria that cause gum disease may travel through the bloodstream or cranial nerves to the brain. They then infect the tissue and create plaques, such as those associated with Alzheimer’s.
2. Blood Sugar Problems
Patients with diabetes are statistically more likely to suffer from periodontal disease, requiring the skill of a periodontist for treatment. Diabetics are often more susceptible to infections, but there is current research that found that patients with gum disease have a harder time controlling their blood sugar. The research also found that treating gum disease can also help improve diabetes symptoms, suggesting a strong link between the two conditions.
3. Issues with Fertility
The average time it takes for women of childbearing age to conceive is five months. However, if you have gum disease, that average is pushed back to seven months. Additional research found that pregnant patient with gum disease are more likely to miscarry than their uninfected peers.
4. Heart Health
Like you brain, your heart is susceptible to infection from bacteria traveling from the open sores in your mouth throughout your body. Research shows that patients with gum disease suffer coronary artery disease twice as much as those with healthy mouths. That is a link that cannot be ignored.
When to Seek Treatment
If you believe you may have gum disease in Salem, OR, contact our office today to schedule an appointment with our periodontist. Your health is worth it.