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Study: Dental health important for HIV individuals
Updated: 4/14/2009 5:00:27 PM

Study: Dental health important for HIV individuals While maintaining good dental health is an important aspect of one's life, a new study is suggesting it may be even more important for people who have a certain strand of HIV.

Japanese researchers from Nihon University have found that periodontal disease may be a risk factor for HIV-1 reactivation after it has been latent in the body and may contribute to the development of AIDS in infected individuals.

HIV-1 was the first strand of the disease that was discovered in the early 1980s and has remained prevalent throughout the world. Another strand, dubbed HIV-2, was also discovered, though it is mainly contained to West Africa.

Both types of the virus are transmitted in the same manner, which adds a certain weight to the finding of this study.

The researchers emphasized the "essential role" of optimal dental care for anyone, since such routine practices can deter the development of other serious conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. This may be especially fitting information to be released given that April is currently national STD awareness month.

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