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Monday, June 1, 2009

Facts about Gum Disease

Treatment for gum disease includes antibiotic pills or gels applied directly into the diseased pocket between the tooth and gum.

Another treatment, “scaling and root planning,” involves an intensive teeth cleaning above and below the gum line that often requires a local anesthetic.

It’s long been known that oral health is an important indicator for the body’s overall health. Now new research suggests gum disease may predict whether you develop diabetes.

Last year, Harvard researchers found a surprising link between poor gum health and pancreatic cancer. Other studies have linked periodontal health to heart disease, stroke and pregnancy problems.

Gum disease is linked with tobacco use but medication side effects, such as dry mouth, can also contribute to oral health problems. Genetics also play a role.

A study in collaboration with cardiologists also links gum disease with heart disease and diabetes.

Gum disease may cause inflammation that puts an expectant mother at risk for pregnancy complications suich as low birth weight and premature birth.

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