Saturday, August 8, 2009

Is There An Association Between Periodontitis and Atherosclerosis?

Periodontitis and atherosclerosis are two technically different diseases that are somewhat associated with the elderly group. Some say that the susceptibility of these individuals to infections such as the above mentioned are what make these associated with the old age group.

However, despite the physiologic context of the two diseases, studies have shown that they are associated when taken separately. To put this statement simply, research have found out that if you have periodontitis, the likelihood of you having atherosclerosis, hence cardiovascular disease, is much higher as compare to those who have healthy tooth attachments.

For you to be able to understand what I'm talking about, you have to first know what is Periodontitis and what is Atherosclerosis. Periodontitis is actually a chronic inflammation of the tissues surrounding the teeth. Now, if there is inflammation, there would probably be an agent which is causing the infection. The agents for periodontitis are actually bacteria that thrive in the oxygen-poor environment that is located below the gingiva.

Periodontitis is basically of two types, chronic periodontitis, which affects the old age group and is somehow physiologically associated, and the other one, which is the less common type, the aggressive periodontitis, which affects young patients and progresses rapidly.

Atherosclerosis, on the other hand, is also a progressive disease process that causes thickening of our arteries. This is by far the most common cause of coronary artery disease.

Now, what is important is that studies have proven that periodontitis and atherosclerosis are indeed associated with each other. There are a lot of proposed mechanisms by which these two diseases interact. One of the most popular ones is the mechanism by which the bacteria causing periodontitis produce different chemicals which trigger the formation of blot clots in your vascular system, thus, leading to atherosclerosis. Periodontitis, being an infection, also weakens one's immune system thereby, predisposing him to more complex systemic diseases, atherosclerosis and cardiovascular diseases included.

Now that you are more aware of the association between periodontitis and atherosclerosis, you are probably enlightened by the fact that taking care of your teeth and maintaining a good oral hygiene is as important as not smoking or drinking, eating healthy, exercising and the like, in preventing cardiovascular diseases. Although we pay little importance to our teeth, this is one way of showing you how important having healthy teeth and gums are in being healthy all-around.

Check out these other Articles:

1. Dental Caries
2. Invisible Braces
3. Dental Laminates

1 comment:

  1. Está muy bueno el post, mi blog está dedicado a ello: