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With ongoing scientific research, we have gained a great deal of insight into the potential causes of the various diseases that occur, and have been able to develop excellent new treatments for many of them. Sometimes, what is discovered is quite surprising. For instance, we know, through research, that low-grade inflammation is one of the primary indicators of cardiovascular disease. This relates to oral health and dentistry because gum disease and other chronic infections could be direct causes of such inflammation.

Science has proven that chronic infection plays a role in inflammation. Gum disease, affecting the oral tissues and leading to redness and swelling, is a chronic infection. Not only does gum disease affect the gums and other oral tissues, but this condition also affects the entire body. In response to chronic infection such as gum disease, the natural inflammatory response of the body reacts strongly, persistently combating aggressive microbes that destroy oral tissues. Because of the inflammatory response, low-grade inflammation may persist in the body for several months, even years. It is due to the potential for chronic inflammation that gum disease is being investigated as a possible risk factor in heart attacks and other cardiovascular events.

At this time, numerous studies on gum disease have been conducted. In a Scottish Health Survey that took place over an 8-year period, researchers found a direct correlation between oral hygiene, gum disease, and cardiac events. During this study, the brushing habits of more than ten thousand participants were recorded. Individuals who brushed infrequently showed increased inflammation markers, an indication of increased coronary risks. 555 participants of this study were affected by cardiovascular disease, and 170 fatal events linked to cardiovascular disease occurred.

Gum disease is a chronic infection that triggers chronic inflammation if not properly treated and managed. Even before this infection drastically impacts systemic health, it breaks down the tissues that support teeth. At West Chester Dental Group, we provide various types of treatment for gum disease, designing treatment plans around individual patients. If you live in the Cincinnati area and want to keep your smile as healthy as possible, contact us and schedule your visit.

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