Periodontal Disease and Heart Disease
Periodontal Disease affects almost 90% of the adult population. It is a silent, painless disease caused when bacteria or plaque attacks the gums. Recent medical evidence supports the link between periodontal disease and heart disease. People with periodontal disease are twice as likely to have a fatal heart attack as those without periodontal disease.
Because periodontal disease is a bacterial infection, then bacteria can enter the bloodstream and travel to the heart and begin new infections. It has been shown that the same bacteria found beneath the gums attaches to the plaques in clogged heart arteries. This contributes to blood clots that cause heart attacks.
Also, existing heart conditions such as murmurs and mitral valve prolapse can make the heart susceptible to life threatening infections caused by oral bacteria.
Before heart surgery, a complete periodontal examination should be performed.