Periodontal Disease Opens Path For Arthritis

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013, 4:18 pm

Studies have shown that people with gum disease are much more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis and that people who have RA are two times more likely to have periodontal disease. Researchers now believe that the bacterium responsible for gum disease may open a pathway for development of rheumatoid arthritis.

An international team of researchers from the European Union’s Gums and Joints project, along with Dr. Jan Potempa from the University of Louisville, have uncovered how the same bacterium that causes gum disease, P. gingivalis, worsens the onset and progression of RA. It turns out that the bacterium produces an enzyme that leads to changes in certain proteins in the body. The subsequent result is the body launching an immune attack on these proteins which leads to chronic inflammation that is responsible for bone and cartilage destruction.

The researchers are hopeful that the discoveries will lead to new options for the prevention and treatment of RA.

How Can You Protect Yourself?

Periodontal disease has been linked to so many other problems throughout the body, including RA, heart disease, pregnancy problems and even certain cancers. Periodontal disease is preventable simply by following good home care (brushing and flossing) and visiting your dental hygienist on a regular basis. If you are diagnosed with periodontal disease it can be treated!

Find out more about protecting yourself from periodontal disease by contacting Wilbanks Smile Center in Toccoa, GA today at 706-886-9439.

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Category: gum disease

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