Save Your Heart - Brush Twice A DayThursday, July 22nd, 2010, 8:00 am
A new study reported in the British Medical Journal, 2010 reports that regular twice-a-day tooth-brushing is associated with lower risks of heart disease. The study also showed decreased levels of inflammatory markers C-reactive protein and fibrinogen, which are associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, when study participants brushed with higher frequency.
The study was designed to discover whether tooth-brushing had an association with C-reactive protein and fibrinogen and the risk of heart attacks. Study participants showed that those who reported less tooth-brushing had a 70% increase in their risk of cardiovascular disease events when compared to those who reported brushing their teeth two times a day.
Researchers also found that people who brushed their teeth less than twice per day had increased levels of both C-reactive protein and fibrinogen. Because periodontal disease is believed to contribute to inflammation, researchers believe that systemic inflammation could be part of the underlying mechanism that links oral health and heart disease. Gum infections may add to the inflammatory burden on the body, which results in higher risks of heart disease.
According to the authors of the study, the results strengthen the link between oral hygiene and heart disease. The study findings also suggest the poor oral hygiene plays a role in increasing the risk of heart disease because of systemic inflammation.
Does all this mean that brushing twice a day will completely protect you from a heart attack? Of course not – the study does prove, once again, the importance of healthy gums and teeth to your overall well-being. My patients report many reasons for avoiding proper dental care – one of the more common reasons is anxiety or fear of dental treatment.
Here at Wilbanks Smile Center my team and I work with you to alleviate your anxiety and allow you to receive the treatment you need. Sedation dentistry may be a good choice for you. Please contact my Toccoa, Georgia office at 706-886-9439 and we can discuss your concerns and offer you several options to make your visit more comfortable. Remember, your dental health is reflected in your overall health – please call today.