February is National Heart Health awareness month. Oral health affects your overall health. Periodontitis (gum disease) and heart disease share risk factors and may be occur simultaneously. Thorough brushing can help lower levels of inflammation in your body which can lower your risk for heart attacks.
“Although the findings indicate a strong link between gum disease and heart disease, it’s still unclear whether one actually causes the other,” says the American Heart Association. The two conditions have some of the same risk factors, including smoking, poor nutrition and diabetes. Researchers believe that inflammation caused by periodontal disease may be responsible for the connection.3
Prevention is the best medicine to lower your risk. Health professionals recommend patients:
  • Brush and floss regularly
  • Quit smoking
  • Manage their weight
  • Control their blood pressure
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet
  • Stay active .
It’s important to see a dentist regular to make sure your teeth, gums and tongue are healthy. Your dentist will be able to detect poor nutrition and signs of developing health problems.