You may have heard that bleeding gums may be a sign of gum disease, a destructive, inflammatory condition caused by the bacteria in your mouth. And like high blood pressure, you may not feel the signs or symptoms until the condition is very advanced. Here are 8 reasons you shouldn’t ignore the “pink in the sink.”
- Heart disease. The bacteria and inflammatory process involved in gum disease can also cause inflammation in the coronary arteries, possibly leading to heart attack and stroke.
- Alzheimer’s disease. Those with gum disease are much more likely to be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Scientists believe this is because long term inflammation causes damage to the brain.
- Pregnancy complications. Pregnant women with gum disease are more likely to have miscarriages and preterm labor. Inflammation associated with gum disease is believed to cause inflammation in the mother’s reproductive system, leading to a decreased likelihood of carrying a baby to term.
- Decreased fertility. The inflammation caused by gum disease tends to inflame the uterus, making it less likely to allow a fertilized egg to implant.
- Erectile dysfunction. Those with gum disease will have more inflammation in all of their blood vessels, which can restrict blood flow to the penis, making it more difficult to get an erection.
- Rheumatoid arthritis. People with uncontrolled gum disease have a more difficult time controlling their rheumatoid arthritis. They have more flare-ups, and achieve remission less often.
- Tooth loss. The inflammation present in the gums will destroy the bone surrounding teeth over time, leading to bone loss, and eventually, loss of teeth.
- Type 2 Diabetes. Gum disease increases the hormone cortisol, which in turn makes it harder to control blood sugar. Those with untreated gum disease are more likely to become diabetic, and those already diagnosed with diabetes have a harder time controlling it.
Don’t let gum disease ruin your life! Call us today at 972-723-1148, or request an appointment online, to have our dentist or hygienist perform a complimentary gum disease screening.