What Your Dentist Can Tell You about Your Heart

Believe it or not, your dental health can be a window into your overall health – making it all the more important that you see your dentist on a regular basis. Here is how one dentist, Dr. Farzad Feiz, explains how your teeth and gums can offer insight into other possible areas of concern:

“Diabetes –Periodontal disease, commonly known as gum disease, has been proven to negatively affect diabetes, and vice versa. Pamela McClain, the president of the American Academy of Periodontology, says that gum disease “further complicates diabetes because the inflammation impairs the body’s ability to utilize insulin”. It is especially important for anyone suffering from diabetes to make sure that they do everything that their dentist recommends to fend off gum disease.

Additionally, an experienced West Los Angeles dentist like Dr. Feiz can identify regular recurrences of periodontal disease as a possible sign that a patient may have diabetes, due to the fact that patients suffering from diabetes get all kinds of infections much easier than someone without the disease.

Osteoporosis – Osteoporosis is the thinning or weakening of bones that generally occurs in female patients, but can also occur in men. While many women and men often attribute the first symptoms of osteoporosis to general aches and pains caused by aging, the weakening of teeth noticed by a dentist can help detect the disease.

A good dentist will ask if women are experiencing any other joint and bone pain if he or she notices that the patient is losing teeth at a peculiar rate.

Heart Disease – Patients with heart disease are much more likely to have gum disease than those without. Additionally, even if someone is already aware of their heart disease, working with their dentist to eliminate periodontal disease is extremely important in reducing the risk of heart attack or stroke. Because gum inflammation can lead to clogged arteries, people with periodontal disease are three times more likely to have a stroke and twice as likely to have a heart attack.

While attaining a perfect smile is an important goal for social situations, many people overlook the many important health benefits that regular check-ups with a careful, experienced dentist may bring.”

This is interesting stuff, but it’s not news to health professionals. For years, doctors have noticed links between the condition of a person’s teeth and gums and their overall health. Dentistry is therefore not just about having a bright smile. In fact, getting your dental health up to par may even save your life.

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