Maybe you read my post last week which had 10 situations which can increase your risks of a stroke. I am going to dig in one of the 10 things more deeply.
A surprising connection exists between periodontal disease, a common inflammatory condition affecting the gums, and stroke risk.
Periodontal disease is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the tissues that support the teeth. Symptoms include red, swollen, bleeding gums, bad breath, and tooth loss. While it is a common condition, it is also highly preventable with good oral hygiene practices and regular dental check-ups
Recent research has shown that individuals with periodontal disease may be at a higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease, including stroke, due to the inflammation and bacteria that can enter the bloodstream and cause damage to blood vessels.
Really! One study published in the American Heart Association’s journal Stroke in 2004 found that individuals with periodontal disease were twice as likely to have a stroke as those without the condition. The study also found that the risk was even higher in individuals with more severe periodontal disease forms. Wow!
Another study published in the Journal of Periodontology in 2019 found that individuals with severe periodontitis had a higher risk of stroke than those with mild to moderate forms of the condition. The study suggested that the increased risk may be due to the chronic inflammation associated with periodontitis, which can contribute to the development of atherosclerosis and other cardiovascular diseases.
To reduce your risk of stroke and other cardiovascular diseases, it’s important to take good care of your oral health. This includes brushing and flossing regularly, using mouthwash, and scheduling regular dental check-ups.
If you have symptoms of periodontal disease, talk to your dentist about treatment options. Taking care of your gums can help protect your overall health and reduce your risk of stroke.
Overall, these studies and others have shown a link between periodontal disease and stroke risk, highlighting the importance of maintaining good oral health to protect against cardiovascular disease.