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The Link Between Periodontal Disease and Systemic Health Problems

January 15, 2019

Filed under: Uncategorized — westshoreteam @ 6:09 pm
heart health concept

Your mouth is more than the tool that you use to eat, speak, and smile. It is a gateway into the rest of your body. What happens there can have a profound and long-lasting impact on your overall health. That is one of the reasons why I always encourage my patients to do all they can to fight periodontal disease in Camp Hill. Scientific studies have linked periodontal (gum) problems to a number of serious system health conditions. If you have untreated gum disease, you could be at a greater risk of all of the following problems:

Diabetic Complications

Gum disease affects nearly one-quarter of people who have been diagnosed with diabetes, making periodontal problems the most common dental issue among individuals with diabetes.  The connection between the two conditions goes both ways. If you have uncontrolled diabetes, you are more vulnerable to infections, including gum disease. If you develop gum disease and do not receive the proper dental treatment for it, it can become more difficult for you to keep your blood glucose levels within an acceptable range.

Cardiovascular Disease

Gum disease can allow dangerous types of bacteria into the bloodstream, which can wreak havoc on bodily systems, including the cardiovascular system. One study even found that gum disease can increase the risk of heart disease by a staggering 20 percent. A separate study discovered that among individuals with both gum disease and heart disease, those who received periodontal treatment had significantly lower cardiovascular care costs.

Premature Birth

If you’re a woman who is thinking about adding a new member to your family, you need to be especially diligent about caring for your entire body — including your mouth. Research suggests that almost one-fifth of premature births are related to periodontitis (advanced gum disease). Premature birth, in turn, has been associated with a number of health risks to babies, including breathing problems, jaundice, and more.


Recent research points to a link between the bacteria that causes gum disease and certain types of cancer, particularly pancreatic cancer. Even more troubling is that gum problems are also associated with a higher mortality rate among pancreatic cancer patients.

Protect Your Gums!

Nearly half of adults in the U.S. have some form of gum disease. If you are part of that half, now is the best time to take control of your oral health. Something as simple as a few changes to your daily oral hygiene routine could help you fight gum inflammation and achieve a healthier mouth and healthier body. In addition to oral hygiene coaching, I also offer specialized gum disease treatment in Camp Hill. My periodontal care plan typically involves a deep cleaning of the mouth, diligent monitoring of a patient’s gum health, and medications to fight harmful oral bacteria.

Don’t let gum disease threaten your overall health! Taking care of your mouth is a huge part of taking care of your systemic well-being.

About the Author

Dr. Rina Singh is an experienced general dentist who takes a personalized approach to dentistry. She is devoted to caring for both the oral and overall health of her patients. To learn more about her and the periodontal services she offers, contact our office at 717-761-0283. 

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