According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders & Stroke, approximately 795,000 people suffer from a stroke every year in the US, claiming more than 140,000 lives. While risk factors like high blood pressure, diabetes, and family history are all well-known, there is one many people don’t ever think about: tooth loss. Studies have shown that tooth loss in Lincoln can significantly raise a person’s risk for suffering a stroke, but why is this the case? Better yet, if you’re already missing teeth, what are the best ways to protect yourself?
How They Are Connected
Recent research has shown that people with untreated tooth loss have a 74% higher risk of stroke. That’s a very illuminating statistic, but how can a dental problem cause this kind of cardiovascular issue?
The answer comes down to something called the oral-systemic connection. Basically, it says that anything in your mouth can easily enter into your blood stream and travel everywhere else in your body. This is true with food as well as…harmful bacteria. When a person experiences tooth loss, this is often due to gum disease, which is the result of an accumulation of bacterial plaque along the roots of the teeth. On top of this, tooth loss also increases a person’s chances of developing gum disease as well.
Scientists believe that this bacteria is able to enter into the blood stream and cause inflammation in the arteries, meaning it’s much easier for them to become blocked. Gum disease has also been shown to have a strong connection to heart attack as well, providing further evidence there is a direct link between it and cardiovascular-related problems.
What this Means for You
If you are missing one or more teeth, then replacing them is extremely important, not just for your smile, but your overall wellbeing, too! Fortunately, dentistry is able to offer a wide range of solutions for patients missing any number of teeth. In addition to traditional bridges and dentures, dental implants in Lincoln now enable patients to literally rebuild their teeth from the root up. They work by placing a small titanium post into the jawbone that is used to support the replacement teeth, providing a result that is the closest thing to nature.
How to Get Started
Simply ignoring your missing teeth might seem like an easy answer, but doing so can spell big trouble for your oral and overall health in the future. Contact your local dentist today and let them know you’re interested in restoring your smile. They’ll likely schedule you for a consultation where they’ll go over all of your treatment options in detail and even discuss how they can make sure they’ll fit comfortably into your budget. Whatever you decide on, replacing your missing teeth is always a worthy investment, and it could literally add many healthy years to your life!
About the Author
Dr. Chris Haag is a family, cosmetic, and implant dentist who has been practicing in Lincoln since 1992. He always makes his patients aware of the close relationship between oral and overall health, and he’s happy to provide any treatment someone might need to protect both. To learn more about how taking care of your teeth can help you from head to toe, he can be contacted through his website.