The Connection between Your Smile and Your Heart

February 11, 2014

gum disease and heart healthWith Valentine’s Day just a few days away, we thought it might be a good time to bring up the connection between your oral health and your heart.

According to existing data, gum disease increases your risk for heart disease, which claims many lives every year.

Gum disease begins with the accumulation of bacteria and plaque around the gum line. Over time, if it’s not treated, it can cause pockets to develop between the teeth and gums. That gives bacteria and plaque a way into the bloodstream. Once in your blood, they can travel through your body to your heart, contributing to blood clots and possibly even heart attacks.

Other health problems can also be tied to gum disease, including:

  • Alzheimer’s
  • Stroke
  • Diabetes
  • Pneumonia
  • Pre-term Birth

So what can you do to decrease your risk of developing health problems related to gum disease? First, remember to brush and floss on a regular basis. We recommend brushing twice a day (or after every meal, if possible) and flossing at least once. You can also add an antibacterial mouthwash to your daily routine.

Second, make sure you’re visiting Dr. Dooley’s Spring Lake dental office twice a year for checkups and cleanings. Checkups will help us watch for signs of gum disease while cleanings let us remove bacteria and plaque from your gum line before they have a chance to cause an infection.

Call us today if you want to know more about the connection between your smile and your heart, or if you simply want to make an appointment. We offer general dental care to patients from Spring Lake, Avon, Brille, Manasquan, Wall Township, Belmar, and other New Jersey cities.

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