November 9, 2016
You’re routinely reminded that many things can lead to cancer. The one that is probably mentioned the most is tobacco use. You’ve also heard that too much time in the sun or too much stress can lead to cancer. However, did you know that even gum disease can increase your risk of cancer? Your dentist in Lincoln at Vacek Family Dentistry talks about this surprising connection, and what you can do to protect yourself.
What is Gum Disease?
You brush and floss your teeth every day to break up and clean away the plaque that is constantly building on them. This is because plaque can eventually lead to tooth decay, but did you know that plaque can also damage your gums? Your gums are just as susceptible to harm from plaque as your teeth. This can cause problems for a few reasons.
The gums help protect the sensitive enamel that encases the roots of your teeth. Gum disease can cause them to recede and expose your roots, leaving them more vulnerable to tooth decay. This is why gum disease is one of the leading causes of tooth loss. The gums also help supply your teeth with essential blood, and they can do this because they are very vascular. This attribute is how gum disease can increase your risk of cancer.
Gum Disease and Cancer
Due to your gums having so many blood vessels, it is easy for any substance in your mouth to get into your blood stream. This means that the bacteria and toxins created by gum disease have the ability to travel to anywhere in your body, and this has been shown to increase a person’s risk for malignancies. Multiple studies have shown that the presence of gum disease is associated with an increased rate of cancer. Since this bacteria can travel anywhere, gum disease has also been associated with conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and dementia.
What Can You Do About It?
One of the best ways you can protect yourself from gum disease is to regularly see your Lincoln dentist at Vacek Family Dentistry. This will give Dr. Vacek, Dr. Gufford, and their team the chance to examine and properly clean your gums. Many people miss or simply forget to clean their teeth along the gum line, and this can allow gum disease to develop. It starts very subtly and takes a long time to progress, which is why people can so often not notice it. The doctors will be able to spot even the slightest signs of gum disease and give you the exact treatment that you need.
The health of your gums is often the best indicator of your overall health, and Vacek Family Dentistry wants to help you take care of them. It is one of the simplest ways to preserve your health for the long-term. If you have any questions about how you can prevent gum disease, please give us a call today.
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