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The Suprising Link Between Your Heart and Teeth
February, the month of love, is the perfect time to focus on the heart.
The heart is a vital, muscular organ that pumps blood to various parts of the body. A sick heart can spell disaster for overall health; heart disease is the #1 killer of men and women in the U.S.
Surprisingly, one of the keys to a healthy heart is a healthy mouth. That’s because gum disease roughly doubles the risk of heart disease.
How are the heart and mouth are connected? And what can we do to prevent gum disease?
Well, bacteria in the mouth can migrate into the blood stream and form small blood clots that clog arteries. Inflammation from gum disease, a.k.a. periodontal disease, can also lead to the buildup of fatty deposits inside arteries. These deposits can restrict blood flow to the heart and brain, triggering a heart attack or stroke.
Gum disease isn’t the only risk factor for heart disease. Other risks include smoking, old age, and obesity. However, gum disease is easily prevented by brushing twice a day, flossing, using a fluoride mouthwash, and scheduling regular check-ups with your dentist.
So, for your heart’s sake, it’s important to take care of your oral and overall health. Your mouth is a vital part of your overall wellness. Here are some tips for a healthier mouth and heart:
- Brush and floss twice a day.
- Eat healthfully (reduce added sugars, eliminate sugar sodas)
- Schedule regular dental check-ups and cleanings because gum disease is preventable and much easier to treat and control if discovered early.
For more information on your oral to overall health, visit the blog of Delta Dental of Washington.