A new study released by the European Society of Cardiology finds that dental check ups and strong dental hygiene habits may help to protect the health of your heart and lower your risk of cardiovascular disease. The study involved 15,000 patients who suffer from chronic coronary heart disease. The participants were asked to submit information regarding their dental health. The researchers found that poor dental health and symptoms of gum disease were linked to a stronger risk for developing cardiovascular disease. Also, data showed that fewer indicators of gum disease were associated with lower levels of cardiovascular risk factors. The research suggests that gum disease may be a possible risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Protecting our gums is extremely important in preserving our teeth and oral health. Your Vista dentist, Dr. Alexander Sabet, answers some of his patients’ most common questions regarding gum disease.
Q: What is gum disease?
A: Gum disease is the infection and inflammation of the gum tissue and bones which support teeth. When plaque builds up on our teeth and is not completely cleaned off, the plaque can harden into a tartar. Over time, the plaque and tartar can cause the gums to become inflamed as seen in gingivitis, a mild form of gum disease. If mild forms of gum disease are not treated by a professional, the gums may begin to recede from the teeth and form pockets which become infected. Eventually, the gums and bone that support the teeth deteriorate and become unable to support the teeth. Teeth can become loose and may require extraction.
Q: What are the symptoms of gum disease?
A: Symptoms of gum disease include red, swollen gums that may bleed and cause discomfort. Gum disease can also cause bad breath, receding gums, and sensitive teeth.
Q: How is gum disease treated?
A: The doctor and his team will gather information about your medical history in order to determine if you possess any risk factors that may influence gum disease, such as smoking. They may also use a small ruler, a “probe,” to measure pockets. A healthy pocket is between 1 and 3 millimeters. Dr. Sabet or his hygienists may give you a deep cleaning which includes root planing and scaling. Scaling wipes off the tartar from above and below the gum line, and root planing targets problem areas on the tooth root, removing them so that germs will no longer accumulate there. In serious cases, medications or surgery may be in order as well. Dr. Sabet’s treatments must be coupled with diligent at-home care of daily flossing and twice daily brushing.
About Your Doctor
If you would like to schedule a consultation for a dental cleaning or another service, call our Vista office at (760) 724-9117. Dr. Alexander A. Sabet welcome and treats patients from Vista and the surrounding areas of Carlsbad, Ocean side, San Marcos, and Escondido.