Recent research has demonstrated a possible link between periodontal disease and heart disease. In a new study in which researchers infected mice with four different types of bacteria associated with gum disease, the mice had increased levels of inflammation and cholesterol. Other research is starting to point to a possible connection between gum disease and Type 2 diabetes, memory loss and even cancer. Periodontal disease is an inflammatory disease which can lead to jawbone erosion if left untreated. This inflammation leads to pockets forming between the gums and teeth which can trap food. The space where the tooth meets the gum is the richest area in the mouth for bacteria. All of these factors combine to make the mouth an area ripe for producing inflammation. Regularly brushing and flossing your teeth helps sweep away these bacteria and can decrease inflammation. So pullout your tooth brush and floss! Less inflammation in the mouth means less inflammation throughout the body.
Photo by Aaron McIntyre and found on flickr under Creative Commons license. Text added by me.
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