Do You Know the Relationship Between Your Teeth and Your Heart? Talk to Your Pediatric Dentist.
The research scientists discovered that “Tooth brushing three or more times a day was associated with a 10% lower risk of atrial fibrillation…”
Even more impressive, people who had brushed three or more times a day showed, “…a 12% lower risk of heart failure during 10.5-year follow up.”
Apparently clean teeth pay off in a number of healthy ways.
More Surprising Discoveries
The research findings did not depend on a number of factors we might have expected. The results were simply not influenced by “age, sex, socioeconomic status, regular exercise, alcohol consumption, body mass index, and comorbidities such as hypertension.”
The point of the study was not to investigate mechanisms, but only to observe. However, scientists could not help but observe an important possibility:
If you have clean teeth, you reduce the bacteria in the subgingival biofilm. This refers to the bacteria which live in the deep pockets between your teeth and gums. The scientists deduced that the dedicated tooth brushing, flossing, and cleaning, prevented the translocation of bacteria to the bloodstream. The obvious benefit was a healthier heart.
Clean Teeth and Healthy Hearts Need More Study
Senior author Dr. Tae-Jin Song of Ewha Woman’s University, Seoul, Korea was well aware that the research was limited to only one country, which weakened their findings. However, the scientists did study a big group for a long time, which made their findings strong. They did not pretend that they had proven solid causation, just observation. “We studied a large group over a long period, which adds strength to our findings.”
They stated, “It is certainly too early to recommend toothbrushing for the prevention of atrial fibrillation and congestive heart failure.” And they hedged their deductions by recommending more study. Thus, they added, “While the role of inflammation in the occurrence of cardiovascular disease is becoming more and more evident, intervention studies are needed to define strategies of public health importance.”
Toothy Take-Aways from Clean Teeth and Healthy Hearts
Even though we need more studies such as this one, there could be no harm in keeping extra clean teeth. An extra brushing or extra flossing that just might keep our hearts healthier could be a good idea. It would not take much time and it could even feel good.
How about Getting Clean Teeth After Lunch?