A recent study confirms what many dentists and health professionals have long suspected; that consuming junk food can lead to boosted risk of cardiovascular disease and oral health issues. Sodas and foods that are full of sugars and carbohydrates are the most likely culprits for both according to study in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine. At Tigard Family Dental, your Tigard kids dentist, we want you to make sure your oral and overall health is both taken care of properly.
Heart Disease and Gum Disease
Consuming too much sugar and not taking care of your teeth can lead to gum disease, or periodontitis. In severe cases, the bone supporting the teeth can be devastated by gum disease like this. If the periodontal disease is a chronic condition, it can cause inflammation throughout the body that can also result in heart disease. This is due to arteries hardening or what is called atherosclerosis.
Any elevated levels of gingivitis can be the start of periodontal disease. Disease happens when the gums become inflamed and full of harmful bacteria. Another report published in the Journal of Periodontology and the American Journal of Cardiology found that periodontal disease is a definite risk factor for heart disease. And another National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey showed the disease of the gums was also a factor in strokes and other injuries involving the arteries and blood vessels that transfer blood to the brain. Their large study of over 50,000 participants also showed that people with less teeth and periodontal disease had an increased risk of strokes.
Junk Food’s Effect on Oral Health
In the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine report, Dr. Rashid of the University of Cambridge was quoted in British Dental Journal as saying, “As well as having high levels of fats and salt, junk foods often contain a great deal of sugar and the effect this has on oral health may be an important additional mechanism by which junk food elevates risk of CVD.” Dr. Rashid continued: “Among different types of junk food, soft drinks have raised particular concerns and are the main source of free sugar for many individuals.
What You Can Do
You can avoid the complications from gum disease by paying close attention to your diet and consuming less sugar and carbohydrates that can lead to decay. Soft drinks, which themselves can contain up to 11 teaspoons of sugar in each can or bottle, are prime suspects in impacting dental health. Remembering to brush twice a day for two to three minutes, flossing regularly and visiting the dentist twice a year can help immensely. At every visit to Tigard Family Dental, Dr. Williams or one of our professional staff will check your entire mouth and gums for any signs of gingivitis or gum disease. If caught early, there are many ways to prevent periodontal disease from impacting your cardiovascular systems. Please contact us to today schedule your appointment.