Are My Bleeding Gums Killing Me?
Yes, they could be. Cardiovascular (heart) disease, atherosclerosis (arterial disease) and diabetes have all been conclusively linked with gum disease. If you suffer from any of these, then your bleeding gums are making your already serious problem worse. If you do not have these diseases, but are at risk for them, then your bleeding gums are increasing your chances of developing cardiovascular disease, atherosclerosis and diabetes.
There is a critical and definite link between dental health and whole body health. In fact, the evidence is now sufficient to be considered complete regarding the interconnections between periodontal disease, atherosclerosis, cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. All four of these diseases are interrelated. A brief description of how they are interrelated is as follows: Diabetes is the #1 systemic risk factor for periodontal disease; periodontal disease worsens blood sugar control by increasing insulin resistance; insulin resistance is the biggest cause of atherosclerosis; and atherosclerosis is the primary driver of cardiovascular disease. For more information on these relationships and others visit perio.org and click on the “gum disease” tab, then on the “health risks” tab.
Will having “gums of steel” guarantee that you will never have the diseases discussed here? No, because these diseases are multi-factorial. However, every factor we can control provides one more preventive defense against diseases that severely affect quality and length of life. If you already suffer from atherosclerosis, cardiovascular disease or diabetes and have loose teeth, sore, tender or bleeding gums, please contact your dental professional and learn how to treat this critical problem. It could save your life!