on Valentine's Day, A healthy mouth may be key to a healthy heart

By February 13, 2012 January 2nd, 2020 No Comments

To have a healthy mouth — and perhaps healthier heart — brush, floss and get regular check-ups.

It’s a message many Salinas dentists strive to get out, and Valentine’s Day, the perfect “hearts and flowers day,” seems a good occasion to re-emphasize it.

In its crimson, stylized form, a strongly beating heart is, after all, a key metaphor for the life and love celebrated that day. Now some say that a mouth free of decay and disease also helps foster a healthy heart.

“At least some scientific evidence is starting to support that idea, but it’s not yet absolute…Researchers, for example, found certain bacterial strains similar to those in the mouth show up in atherosclerotic plaque on the inner lining of arterial walls.

That’s important. It proves bacteria from the mouth are getting into the blood stream…dental implants London

The critical gum line

The mouth, the “oral cavity,” has long been thought of as a “window to the body…At least twice yearly, Jimenez settles into the dental chair at Aldape’s office to get her teeth and gums checked.

“So we can be aware of any problem early on,” Jimenez said.

Aldape, in a crisp, white dentist’s coat, unwrapped a sterile probe graduated with millimeter markings on its tip.

She uses the probe to measure the depth of “pockets,” unhealthy spaces formed when gum begins to separate from tooth.

The numbers on the probe can indicate everything from normal conditions to advanced periodontal disease.

Peering into a mouth stricken with gingivitis, Aldape would see gums reddened and implants London..

Plaque and tartar would be built up at the gum line, but the bone that holds the teeth would still be healthy, Aldape said.

Periodontitis is the next stage of gum disease.

O’Shea treats patients with gums that are separating from teeth and gums that are receding and pockets forming.

“Bacteria in these pockets are more virulent and contribute further to disease progression,”..

Suspicious links

Aldape echoes those who believe there is a healthy-mouth-to-healthy-body-and-heart link.

“It’s important to keep the mouth healthy and cavity-free,” she said. “If you have some (destructive) bacteria in the mouth, it may get into the whole body and affect the heart, too.”

In a paper she wrote on the subject, Aldape called bone loss in the part of the jaw containing tooth sockets “a significant predictor of chronic heart disease.”

Oral health has also been implicated in other health problems, diabetes being one.

“Periodontal disease appears to make it more difficult for diabetics to stabilize their blood glucose levels,” Aldape says on her website,

Periodontal disease is linked to other conditions with “systemic implications” such as respiratory infections, she said.

Beyond that, research suggests that periodontal bacteria in the blood stream may “contribute to development of heart disease and to an increased risk of stroke,” cosmetic dentist London

Widespread disease

Gingivitis and periodontal disease are widespread….Up to 80 percent of Americans ages 35 and older have gum disease, he said. That’s a figure from the National Institutes of Health, cosmetic dentist London

O’Shea does an average of seven surgeries a week in which he cleans infected tissues, does bone regeneration and other procedures.

Treatment can reverse gingivitis, he said. Not so with periodontitis.

“Periodontitis is a disease for life, but you can stop it with early diagnosis and proper care and with good treatment,” he said.

As always, the best way to achieve oral health is prevention — which starts with that toothbrush and floss and regular trips to the dentist, O’Shea and Aldape said…read more

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About London Smile Care

We are proud to provide the widest possible choice of private dentistry to our clients including: General Dentistry, Cosmetic Dentistry, Teeth Whitening, Dental Implants, Hygienist services / treating gum disease, Root Canal Treatments (Endodontics), Conventional and invisible Braces (Orthodontics), Occlusion / TMJ disorders, Sedation for the anxious patients

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