Diseased Gums Pump High Levels of Harmful Substances Into Blood

A study published in the Journal of Periodontology confirmed that people with periodontal disease are at a greater risk of systemic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease. Researchers found diseased gums released significantly higher levels of bacterial pro-inflammatory components, such as endotoxins, into the bloodstream in patients with severe periodontal disease compared to healthy patients. As a result, these harmful bacterial components in the blood could travel to other organs in the body, such as the heart, and cause harm.

Researchers studied 67 patients: 42 were diagnosed with moderate to severe periodontitis and the remaining 25 patients were healthy individuals. Those with severe periodontal disease had approximately four times more harmful bacterial products in their blood than those with moderate or no periodontal disease.

Periodontal diseases are serious bacterial infections that destroy the attachment fibers and supporting bone that hold your teeth in your mouth. When this happens, gums separate from the teeth, forming pockets that fill with plaque and even more infection. As the disease progresses, these pockets deepen even further, more gum tissue and bone are destroyed, and the teeth eventually become loose.

Approximately 15 percent of adults between 21 and 50 years old and 30 percent of adults over 50 have periodontal disease, according to the American Academy of Periodontology.

Gum disease can be controlled, but never cured. Besides brushing and flossing regularly, you must keep regular dental check-ups every three to six months for dental cleanings.

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