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Poor dental hygiene linked to heart disease
Updated: 5/27/2010 5:00:29 PM

Poor dental hygiene linked to heart disease A new study from the University College of London has found that individuals who brush their teeth less than twice a day are at an increased risk of heart disease, further linking good dental health with overall health.

It has been known for years that poor dental hygiene can lead can lead to many serious oral problems like gum disease and cavities. Dentists have even warned that those who do not take care of their mouths may be at a higher risk of other, more serious health problems.

However, this is the first study to show a direct link between those who don't brush regularly and heart disease.

Professor Richard Watts, who led the study, speculated that inflammation in the mouth may spread to other parts of the body, like the heart and arteries, leading to the elevated risk, according to Dentistry.co.uk.

"Our results confirmed and further strengthened the suggested association between oral hygiene and the risk of cardiovascular disease - furthermore, inflammatory markers were significantly associated with a very simple measure of poor oral health behavior," he told the news source.

Other studies have shown that bacteria-causing inflammation in the mouth can travel through blood vessels, causing problems throughout the body.

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