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Inflammation in Periodontal Disease a Red Flag for Cancer

By April 13, 2018Uncategorized

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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