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Understanding the Connection between Periodontal Disease and Respiratory Disease

Last updated 4 years ago

Do you ever notice that your gums seem red, inflamed, or tender? If so, you may be suffering from periodontal disease. While this condition may seem like it causes nothing more than minor discomfort, it can lead to serious problems that extend beyond your mouth. In fact, evidence suggests that there is a connection between periodontal disease and respiratory disease. Continue reading to find out more about this connection.


Immune Weakness
An individual who suffers from low immunity may be more susceptible to both periodontal disease and respiratory infections. This is because bacteria are able to attack tissues of the body with little resistance. What is particularly concerning about this fact is that developing periodontal disease can make a person with low immunity even more susceptible to respiratory problems.

Spread of Bacteria
What comes as a surprise to many individuals is that the bacteria which are naturally present in the mouth can spread to other areas of the body and lead to infections in those areas. If the bacteria which cause periodontal disease are able to spread to the lungs, they can infect the tissues there and cause pneumonia to develop. Additionally, oral bacteria that spread to the lungs may make respiratory conditions that are already present even worse.

If you have periodontal disease, one of the first symptoms to develop will likely be inflammation. This swelling occurs as an immune response to the infection in your gums. If the bacteria causing your periodontal disease are able to spread to your lungs, they may also cause inflammation there. While gum inflammation may not seem too troublesome, inflammation of the lung lining can lead to serious problems, as it inhibits your ability to breathe freely.

One of the best lines of defense against periodontal disease is regular visits to your general dentist. During your dental cleanings, your dentist will remove any plaque and tartar that have accumulated around your gum line to help prevent periodontal disease and its associated complications. To schedule an appointment with a comprehensive dentistry practice, call The Smile Design Center of Baltimore at (443) 275-9821.


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