February marks American Heart Month, dedicated to raising awareness of the dangers of heart disease. Keeping your heart healthy, however, is a lifelong practice. So what does your dental health have to do with your cardiovascular wellbeing? More than you may think, actually. A plethora of studies examining oral-systemic health (the relationship between your oral and physical health) have shown a connection between dental disease and heart disease, including the presence of gum disease-causing bacteria in the midst of atherosclerosis (a disease involving plaque buildup in the arteries). As part of our dedication your oral and systemic health, Austin family dentist Dr. Steven Van Wicklen discusses tips for keeping your heart healthy, including how to ensure a clean and disease-free mouth.
Tips for a Healthy Heart
Two of the most common methods of keeping your heart in good shape are to exercise regularly and maintain a healthy, well-balanced diet. The plaque that can accumulate on the walls of your blood vessels and arteries is comprised largely of cholesterol and fat deposits, which can accumulate in excess if you’re not careful with your meals. Daily physical activity can help you control your weight, cholesterol, and blood pressure, as well as improving your respiratory system’s ability to deliver oxygen-laden blood to your heart and other organs, which is essential to their proper function.
What you don’t do can be as important as what you do when it comes to your heart health. Refrain from damaging habits such as tobacco use and excessive alcohol consumption to help reduce your chances of developing heart disease, lung disease, gum disease, and a host of other help complications.
Improved Dental and Heart Health with Your Austin Family Dentist
The prevailing research into heart health and oral diseases points to the bacterium Porphyromonas gingivalis, the microbe responsible for inciting inflammation in your gums. Diseased oral tissue can provide a pathway for these germs to enter your bloodstream. Brushing and flossing your teeth can help control the accumulation of these germs and reduce your risk of developing gum disease. To learn more about maintaining your oral health,speak with your Austin family dentist as soon as possible. You can schedule an appointment with Dr. Van Wicklen by calling 512-448-3131. Located in the 78704 area, we proudly serve the cities of Austin, Round Rock, Pflugerville, Bastrop, Bee Cave, Cedar Park, and all surrounding communities.