Monday, December 5, 2011

Health problems linked to periodontal disease - Part 1

If your teeth are not aligned properly in your mouth it is harder to exercise proper oral hygiene. Left untreated, a bad bite can lead to periodontal disease.

Gum disease - which can be secondary to having crooked teeth - isn’t just a problem for your oral health. When your mouth is full of harmful bacteria fighting it out with your immune system, your whole body is affected, just as it would be if you had a bad infection anywhere else in your body.

While inflammation is your body’s normal reaction to fight off infection, when inflammation in your mouth goes on for a long time, it can lead to inflammation throughout your body – and that’s a well-known risk factor for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (a.k.a “heart disease”) and even having a stroke.

Studies have shown that preventing inflammation to begin with is the best way to reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke. That means good dental hygiene is key. In order to exercise the best oral hygiene possible, your teeth and bite must be aligned properly.

It might sound far-fetched to associate crooked teeth, poor oral hygiene, periodontal disease and certain types of cancer. There is, however, a correlation between a history of periodontal disease and several cancers, including a 36% increased risk of lung cancer, a 49% increased risk of lung cancer, and a 54% increased risk of pancreatic cancer. Peridontal disease has also been associated with colon cancer and some types of blood cancer.