Midlife Tooth Loss Associated With Higher Risk Of Cardiovascular Disease

Medical News Today reported that preliminary research found “tooth loss in middle age is tied to a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, independent of traditional risk factors such as high blood pressure, poor diet, and diabetes.” Study co-author Lu Qi, who is a professor of epidemiology at Tulane University, said, “Our findings suggest that middle-aged adults who have lost two or more teeth in the recent past could be at increased risk for cardiovascular disease.”

From the medial journal Circulation, the authors state “Dental health problems such as tooth loss are related to inflammation and detrimental dietary changes, and may be linked to elevated risks of future heart disease. Most previous studies only investigated pre-existing tooth loss at baseline; hence, whether incident (more recent and later in life) tooth loss is associated with an increased risk of future coronary heart disease (CHD) remains unclear.”

Further, “Our results suggest that among middle-aged adults, a higher number of teeth lost in the recent past may be associated with subsequent risk of CHD, independent of the baseline number of natural teeth and traditional risk factors.”

What’s the message you should understand? Having regular, professional dental care and well as effective daily home dental care can reduce problems associated the heart disease. Although the authors were a little tentative to make “big” claims, in my practice ovwer over 30 years, I have witnessed many people developing heart problems who just happened to have lost of dental problems, especially gum disease. I believe we will see more definitive statements about this in the future.

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