Can my oral health really affect my systemic health?
Yes! The most recent review article published in the Journal of Dental Research (highest impact factor journal for dentistry), highlights the impact of bacterial pathogens on the immune system and inflammatory processes (1). In simple terms, systemic inflammation can be controlled by the body’s reaction to bacterial DNA. This DNA is implicated as an activator for many inflammatory/immune (including cancer, atherosclerosis, and heart disease) and viral (HPV and herpes virus) conditions. Future research is aimed at identifying and breaking down the signaling cascade from bacterial insult in efforts to treat a variety of conditions and diseases.
How does this relate to you?
Controlling oral bacterial infections including periodontal disease is one way to help reduce the risk of developing the said conditions. Seeking periodontal treatment can positively affect inflammatory and/or immune conditions. Now more than ever, research supports early diagnosis and treatment of “gum” disease to improve your overall health!
In light of the above, there is a clear need for collaboration between your oral health care provider and primary care provider. Dr. Anderson works closely with your MD and will develop a plan to improve your oral and systemic health. Together they can identify conditions you may be at risk for through simple techniques including saliva and blood samples. Visit Dr. Anderson to learn more about this link and if you are at risk!
(1) Crump KE, Sahinqur SE. Microbial Nucleic Acid Sensing in Oral and Systemic Diseases. J Dent Res. 2015.