Tooth Loss As a Potential Cause Of Cardiovascular Disease

A recent new body of research has shown a link between cardiovascular disease and tooth loss.

According to a preliminary study at the Lifestyle and Cardiometabolic Health Scientific Sessions during the 2018 American Heart Association’s Epidemiology and Prevention conference, the data presented by researchers showed middle-aged patients who had lost two or more teeth had a higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

A control experiment was carried out by the researchers in which they studied a group of middle-aged adults ranging from 45-68 years of age. An analysis of the effect of tooth loss over an eight-year period was carried out. None of the participants portrayed any type of cardiovascular disease at the onset of the study. They were instructed to report any tooth loss to the researchers who would then document the number of their remaining natural teeth at the end of the study.

In contrast to people who hadn’t experienced tooth loss, it was discovered that participants with 25-32 at the beginning of the study who had lost two or more of their natural teeth had a 23% probability of developing cardiovascular disease. During the eight-year period, researchers noted only a minimal increase among participants who reported only losing a tooth. On the other hand, participants who had less 17 natural teeth on the onset of the study had a 25% higher chance of risk. There was a 16% spike in risk of cardiovascular disease among participants who had lost two or more teeth during the study compared to those who hadn’t lost any teeth at all.

Across the board, the study results showed the correlation between heart disease and poor dental health, such as periodontal disease and tooth loss. Ironically, healthy lifestyle factors such as low BMI (Body Mass Indexes), healthy diets, regular exercise routines and unhealthy factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol were not factors in the likelihood of cardiovascular disease development among participants.

This study reveals dental issues are a significant factor in the development of coronary heart disease. The research yielded evidence showing the missing link between tooth loss and risk of cardiovascular disease. Apart from poor oral health and hygiene, diabetes and inflammation were also related to cardiovascular disease.

The study highlights the importance of attention to our oral health by primary care physicians, since slight changes to oral health and tooth loss could signify the presence of underlying health issues. Patients may improve their personal health outcomes by maintaining healthy practices, avoiding risk factors such as smoking, and monitoring their blood sugar levels and cholesterol.