Gum Disease Linked to Lung Disease

Gum disease affects as many as 75% of the population in some form.  In the earliest phase, gingivitis signified by gum inflammation and bleeding gums can be managed with the proper protocol from your dentist. When left untreated, gingivitis can progress to a dental infection, receding gums and tooth loss. Gum disease has also been linked to a variety of medical conditions. Most recently, study results published in the Journal of Periodontology  demonstrate that gum disease increases the risk for respiratory infections, such as, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and pneumonia. So if you were interested in Austin cosmetic dentistry, you’ll also want to protect your general oral health.

The study involved 200 participants ranging in age from 20 to 60. Fifty percent had been hospitalized for pneumonia, COPD, or acute bronchitis- all leading life threatening diseases. The rest of the participants were healthy. The study researchers evaluated the participants’ oral health and screened the participants for periodontal disease. The researchers identified that the people who had respiratory distress had poor periodontal status when compared to the participants who did not have respiratory distress. The research has suggested that since these lung diseases are caused by infections that pass through the throat, oral bacteria associated with gum disease can be a trigger for lung disease. Researchers did note that further research must be performed in order to conclusively link respiratory disease to periodontal disease.

Treatment for gum disease is crucial to cease the progression of the disease. Early treatment includes professional dental cleanings, as well as, root planing and scaling which may be required to be performed every three months throughout each year. One of the latest treatments for the management of gum disease is bio film treatment. Bio film treatment is a painless solution that can be applied to the teeth on a regular basis to fend off harmful pathogens that are responsible for gum disease and its progression. Dr. Mark Sweeney is one of a select number of dentists who is certified in bio-film treatment.

If you are interested in general dentistry or cosmetic dentistry, contact Dr. Mark Sweeney, an Austin Texas cosmetic dentist, for a consultation at 512-380-1300.