High blood pressure and gum diseaseDid you know that if you suffer from hypertension and have poor oral health, you’re likely to have less control over your blood pressure?  Studies show that gum disease can worsen a person’s blood pressure and affect treatment, proving that maintaining good oral health is an important step in the prevention of cardiovascular disease.

Studies also show that patients with high blood pressure and healthier gums have lower blood pressure and respond better to medications as a treatment versus patients with periodontitis (gum disease).

The Link Between the Hypertension and Gum Disease

Gum disease affects nearly 50 percent of the adult American population and even though it can be caused by a variety of factors including genetics and smoking, it is often caused by poor dental habits.  Gum disease causes inflammation of the gums and if left unchecked, can spread to your bloodstream and cause high blood pressure, heart disease or a stroke.

A study presented at the American Heart Association in November 2017 showed that intensive treatment of gum disease was associated with a significant decrease in blood pressure among Chinese patients at risk for developing high blood pressure.

This small study compared blood pressure levels after standard and intensive treatment for gum disease.  Blood pressure was documented after treatment for one month, three months and lastly at six months.  Results showed that periodontal treatments alone can reduce levels and inhibit inflammation.

Once again, we see that maintaining good oral care with regular dental visits can protect you in more ways than just saving your teeth, and having a dentist and a primary physician that can recognize the signs may prevent the onset of multiple illnesses.

More information on the study can be found at: http://newsroom.heart.org/news/treating-gum-disease-may-help-lower-blood-pressure