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1) If you have a specific issue with a heart valvue--mitral valve proplase with regurgitation, mitral regurgitation, etc, then there is a specific issue. When you clean the teeth the bacteria in your mouth will get into the bloodstream via the gums and for a few minutes you will have more than a normal level of bacteria in your blood. For the normal person this is not a problem. If you have a specific issue with a heart valve, the bacteria in the blood can sometimes get into the diseased valve, infect it, and then continue to spread infection. Since it is in the heart, it will continue to send bacteria in the blood all over the body. This is bad. This is why if you have a known heart issue, or in some cases a joint replacement, you take a dose of antibiotics before seeing the dentist. This would prevent or limit the bacteremia and limit the risk of dental procedures.
There is other preliminary research that having poor gum hygiene, infected teeth, or chronic tooth infections can be linked to higher rates of heart disease. I think the basic premise is that if you have infections in the gums then that would cause a more persistent higher level of bacteria in the blood--which would eventually do bad things to the heart. It makes sense on some level, but its not proven yet. Still, I would do your best to have healthy teeth and gums--you should do that anyway if you like to eat real food. Any heart benefit on top of it would certainly be a bonus!
In addition chronic tooth infections mean there is possibly a reduced ability of your body to fight infections all over your body if dental treatment and good preventive care has not addressed the issue. This lowered immune status may be a sign of a systemic problem affecting the rest of your body including your heart.
You should always have dental infections treated and if they persist your dentist and your medical doctor should explore the cause and treat it as soon as possible to maintain not only your oral but overall health.
The culprit is bacteria. In recent studies, the same bacteria found in calculus ( dental plaque that has mineralized and lies under the gums) has been found in atherosclerotic plaques lining coronary vessels.
It is essential that patients at high risk for cardiovascular disease see a dentist regularly for routine exams and cleanings.
Hope this helps!!!
Dr. Michael Shnorhavorian, DDS
Terry Pratt DDS- Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
Reasearch shows a potential link between chronic periodontal disease and cardiovascular health, but at this point it is not clear. The dental profession has embraced this to help motivate patients have the care they need to have a healthy mouth.
OR you may be asking about an acute bacterial infection that travels to your heart. That can kill you.
My families electrician died from that condition.
Also, read Dr. John Robinson's response too, please.
Inflammation=NOT GOOD. Bacteria, infection, trauma= INFLAMMATION. Solution= limit inflammation
Inflammation is from the Latin, inflammare, which means to set on fire and is part of the bodies response to disease causing bacteria and toxins. The body initiates healing from an injury like a cut with a reaction that produces red, tender and swollen tissue. This reaction allows healing cells from the blood stream to infiltrate the injured tissue to kill bacteria, remove damaged cells and grow new tissue. The inflammation of the typical healing process is temporary.
It is when inflammation is not quickly resolved with healing that local inflammatory factors can spread throughout the whole body. Inflammation can then become a wildfire that spreads out of control causing tissue destruction distant to the site of the original infection. This chronic inflammation can result in atherosclerosis, the blood vessel disease of heart attacks and stokes. Evidence of chronic inflammation in the mouth is the red, tender and swollen gums of periodontal disease. The earliest and easiest stage of periodontal disease to treat is gingivitis.
That's why your routine dental check-ups and cleanings are so important - not just for the health of your teeth and gums, but for your general health. Visit Adult Dentistry of Rochester for your next periodic dental check-up and cleaning where we check the health of the gums with a complete periodontal exam at every visit and thoroughly remove the deposits of bacterial plaque which fuel the fire of gingival inflamation.
It's also possible the relationship is in part also casual -- those who don't take care of their teeth also tend to have life styles that don't take good care of the rest of their body, including heart.
The two hypothesis combined make for a very potent problem. Most likely, reality is based somewhere in between.
Either way, the best solution is to take good care of your teeth and gums with regular brushing and flossing (or tooth picking) as well as take good care of the rest of your health with a properly balanced diet and exercise appropriate for your age and other health conditions.
Dr. Ingo Mahn, AIAOMT, Doctor of Integrative Medicine www.MyNaturalDentist.com
"Spread of infection from the oral cavity as a result of transient bacteremia. Metastatic injury from the effects of circulating oral microbial toxins, and metastatic inflammation caused by immunological injury induced by oral microorganisms. Periodontitis as a major oral infection may affect the host's susceptibility to systemic disease in three ways: by shared risk factors; subgingival biofilms acting as reservoirs of gram-negative bacteria; and the periodontium acting as a reservoir of inflammatory mediators"