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April 2018

gum-disease-and-cancer

Inflammation in Periodontal Disease a Red Flag for Cancer

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By not taking care of your teeth there is more on the line than tooth decay and periodontal disease – although that’s bad enough. Practicing good oral hygiene may be lifesaving according to a number of research studies.

Studies show a connection between Gum disease and a 63% HIgher Pancreatic Cancer in Men

The link between several systemic illnesses including diabetes, heart disease, strokes and gum disease has been well documented. Cancer is also on that list. A study carried out by the Harvard University School of Public Health published in January 2007, in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, revealed a connection in advanced gum disease and a 63% higher incidence of pancreatic cancer in men. Additional research reported in the esteemed Lancet Oncology journal, affirmed that the risk of cancer increases when periodontal disease is present. Even moderate gum disease contributed an increased risk of cancer, including blood, kidney and lung cancers in smokers as well as non-smokers.

Risk of Kidney Cancer, Leukemia and Lung Cancer Increase with Gum Disease

An American and British research team at Harvard University and the Imperial College in London examined the health records of 50,000 patients, data that had been compiled over 21 years. Their findings showed a 50% increase in the chance of kidney cancer, a 30% greater occurrence of blood cancers that included leukemia and a 33% rise in the risk of lung cancer among individuals with gum disease. The most frightening cases involved advanced, chronic gum disease which showed a 4 times higher increase in neck and head cancer for every millimeter of bone loss around teeth. Although the exact reason behind this specific connection is still subject to comprehensive ongoing research, a significant amount of attention is being directed to the oral biofilm (an intricate community of billions of bacteria thriving in the mouth), the inflammatory process and the condition of the immune response.

Excess Biofilm in the Mouth is the underlying cause of Gum Disease

When everything is in balance (also known as homeostasis), the oral biofilm protects our bodies, supporting its ability to live. When the balance is disturbed, the oral biofilm generates bad bacteria (pathogens) that cause gum disease. In addition, these pathogens can get into your circulatory system and cause a myriad of health problems. Pathogenic bacteria and associated toxins alert your immune system of potential problems (triggering the inflammation process), causing the liver to generate CRP (C-reactive protein). C-reactive protein concentrations cause inflammatory side effects on arteries, making it possible for the bacteria to attach and form harmful plaques within the arterial vessels.

Periodontal disease has been recognized as the body’s most significant source of low grade, chronic inflammation. This leads to a decrease in the immune system response, eventually causing irreversible damage to it, which has been identified as a probable variable in the elevated cancer risk.

New Medical Device that’s FDA approved to help treat periodontal disease right at home

The treatment of periodontal disease takes diligent attention to good oral health, fighting the formation of unhealthy dental plaque and the beginning signs of gum disease. Following doctor prescribed dental practices can save and add years to your life and life to your years. A dentist in Holland Michigan has recently developed a medical device to help treat this disease at home.  

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Link Between Periodontal Disease and Oral Cancer

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The Dental Air Force is a home dental cleaning system that replaces tooth brushing and oral irrigation.Learn More

There is a strong relationship between periodontal disease and oral cancer.  In patients with tongue cancer, the periodontal disease preceded the tongue cancer.

Although periodontal disease and oral cancers are both located in the mouth, until recently, there was never thought to be a connection between the two. New evidence is coming to light to show that those with periodontal disease increase their risk of tongue cancer.

There are many causes of oral cancer – unhealthy diets rich in sugars, poor diets, large consumption of tobacco, heavy alcohol consumption and heredity. In addition, there are different types of oral cancers – lip, tongue and really anywhere in the mouth. Tongue cancer is the most common and the most dangerous. The chance of this disease is high in men who over age 60, less in those below 40 years of age and less in women.

In the primary stages of tongue cancer, a small lump or thick white patch appears on the tongue and later is converted into an ulcer. If it is not treated properly, cancer spreads to other places in the mouth, such as gums, lower jaw, lymph nodes and neck. When the tumor enlarges the tongue also becomes more rigid and the ability for the movement of the tongue is reduced. The tumor may also affect speech and swallowing.

Common Symptoms of Tongue Cancer

The common symptoms of oral cancer are patches inside the mouth, lips that are white, lips that are both red and white, a sore on the lip or in the mouth that won’t heal, bleeding in the mouth, difficulty in swallowing, a lump in the neck, or loose teeth.

Treatment Methods for Oral Cancer

The treatment methods for oral cancers are surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. The combination of treatments may vary depending on the patient’s stage. A pain relieving treatment is recommended for patients to decrease the side effects.

Surgery is used to remove the tumor in the mouth. This is the standard treatment for oral cancer. Radiation therapy is also an essential method of treatment. This is given only in the affected area. This treatment is given for those who have small tumors and surgery is not indicated. Radiation may be used before or after surgery to kill the cancer cells.

2 Types of radiation therapy to treat oral cancer

There are two types of radiation therapy used to treat oral cancer – external radiation and internal radiation. In external radiation, the radiation comes from a machine. In internal radiation, the radiation comes from radioactive material placed in seeds, needles or thin plastic tubes put directly in the tissue. Chemotherapy is another method of treatment. In this method, anticancer drugs are used to kill cancer cells.

Signs & Causes of Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease is a chronic infectious inflammation of the tooth and gums. Signs of periodontal disease are bad breath that won’t go away, red or swollen gums, tender or bleeding gums, painful chewing, loose teeth or sensitive teeth. Although late stages of periodontal disease show signs, early stages do not, so regular six-month visits to the dentist are recommended. Causes of periodontal disease are poor oral hygiene, smoking, some medications, some illnesses and genetic susceptibility.

A regular toothbrush breaks down after each us and harbors bacteria. The Dental Air Force is a complete dental cleaning solution available in the home. Dental Air Force eliminates hard-to-remove plaque and kills bacteria which causes periodontal disease.
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Recent Study Concludes that Periodontitis was Associated with Tongue Cancer

In a recent study, the gum disease periodontitis was associated with an increased risk of developing tongue cancer. Dr. Mine Terzal, from the University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine in New York, and colleagues compared 51 white men with newly diagnosed cancer of the tongue to 54 cancer-free “controls” who were seen during the same period. The study excluded people younger than 21 years, those who lacked teeth, had any previous malignancy, and those with a weakened immune system.

The Archives of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery reported that each millimeter reduction in bone was associated with a 5-fold rise in the risk of tongue cancer.

“Periodontitis is a chronic disease that progresses very slowly,” Dr. Terzal noted. “Seeing alveolar bone loss on X-rays indicates the infection has existed for decades, making it clear that periodontitis preceded the cancer diagnosis, and not vice-versa.”

Decreasing the risk of periodontal disease will decrease the risk of tongue cancer

Periodic self-examination of your mouth is the best way to detect the early signs of oral and throat cancer. Cleaning your teeth at least 2 times a day and visiting the dentist 2-3 time a year are recommended for good oral hygiene and decreasing the risk of periodontal disease. Since the studies concluded that there is a strong relationship between periodontal diseases and oral cancer, decreasing the risk of periodontal disease will also decrease the risk of tongue cancer.

Dr. Piero, a practicing dentist for over twenty-five years, is the inventor of Dental Air Force®. Call 616-399-8511 or visit www.dentalairforce.com. Interviews or articles are available on periodontal health related to heart disease, respiratory health, diabetes, strokes, and other systemic diseases.

Once you’ve used Dental Air Force, you’ll know you’ve found the best way to keep your teeth clean and white between visits to the dentist. Here’s what some of our clients have had to say about their experience with the total cleaning power of Dental Air Force.
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