By Caleigh Mitchell, RDH

Many people know that in order to have a healthy heart you have to exercise, eat right, and manage your stress. What many people do not know is that you also need to have a healthy mouth as well. According to many studies, gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, has been linked to heart disease and can increase your risk of having a heart attack. Gum disease causes inflammation of the gums and tissue that surround the teeth. It is the inflammatory properties of gum disease that have lead experts to believe that it contributes or worsens inflammation in the heart.

So how do you know if you have gum disease? As many as 1 in 3 adults have gum disease and do not even know it! Some side effects of periodontal disease are:

  • Swollen and bleeding gums- so if your gums bleed while you brush, this could be a warning sign!
  • Sensitive gums
  • A bad smell or taste in your mouth
  • Loose teeth

You can keep your mouth healthy by brushing 2x daily, flossing 1x daily, and scheduling a visit with your dentist at least 2x a year!