New Delhi: Gum disease is a simple problem. But at the same time, it is also the most neglected one. Nobody takes his/her dental problem seriously.
If you are not paying enough attention to your gum, then here is the bad news for you.
According to two research abstracts presented at the American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference, healthy people with gum disease are likely to suffer from stroke.
- Recent research has found a link between gum disease and blocked arteries in the brain.
- Gum inflammation damages blood vessels slowly. It affects the bloodstream, causing the brain’s arteries to become clogged with a sticky substance.
One important message from these two studies is brush your teeth regularly. You can avoid stroke by cleaning plaque from your teeth every day.
Gum disease is also called periodontal disease. Bacteria and plaque build-up are responsible for the inflammation of the gums.
If your gum bleeds, that means you are not cleaning your teeth properly, and your gum is inflamed. If left treated, it can progress to the tissues that support the jawbone, and teeth may fall out.
Even before the latest studies, we knew that many health complications could be traced to untreated gingivitis and gum inflammation. The latest research has made the connection between gum disease and stroke, diabetes and heart disease clear.
The latest preliminary research will be presented at the American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference next week in Los Angeles.
- There are actually two studies, and both these studies were led by Dr. Souvik Sen, a professor and chair of clinical neurology at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine in Columbia.
- The studies have found two bacteria P. gingivalis and Streptococcus sp DNA, present in carotid arteries and brain blood vessels respectively.
- Large artery strokes due to intracranial atherosclerosis were twice as common in patients with gum disease as in those without gum disease.
- The people with gum disease were 3 times as likely to have a stroke.
- Gingivitis, or inflammation of the gums starts the process of moderately severe narrowed brain arteries. Blame it on plaque buildup.
“It’s important for clinicians to recognize that gum disease is an important source of inflammation for their patients and to work with patients to address gum disease,” said Sen. “We are working on a current study to evaluate if treatment of gum disease can reduce its association with stroke.”