Woodland Hills Dentist Dr. Kanani Of Around The Corner Dental Health Spa; Investigating the Link Between Gum Disease and Other Health Issues

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Recent media reports on links, or lack of links, between gum disease and other health issues have been confusing, especially from the American Dental Association. On March 26, 2013 Cigna Study published a 3-study supporting the link between gum disease and other health issues.

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The American Dental Association (ADA) caused many news reports by issuing an April 2012 news release that seemingly implied a lack of association between gum disease and heart disease. This fueled reports (such as that on Fox News) that the ADA believed, after reviewing 500 studies, that the only cardiovascular danger from gum disease was from bacteria in the blood. Later in 2012, the ADA released another statement for clarification, saying a link exists between the two, just not as strong as some studies seem to indicate. Dr. Kaveh Kanani, a cosmetic dentist in Woodland Hills, offers clarification to patients seeking dental help.

Some things are truly clear about the links between oral health and the rest of the body, says Dr. Kanani. For example, even the revised ADA press releases made it clear that smoking, diabetes and aging can all have a profound effect on teeth as well as the rest of the body. The mouth does not operate alone. Though heart disease and strokes may not be directly tied to decay and bacteria that grow in unattended mouths, there are certainly indications from many studies that periodontitis leads to a greater risk for “atherosclerotic vascular disease”, or heart disease.

The Woodland Hills dentist also says that there's more to a body's health than just the heart. Some candidates for dental implants may not know that treatment of gum disease can greatly cut down on hospital visits. A recent Cigna study found a link between periodontitis (gum disease) and reduced ER visits. Those without gum disease showed 54% fewer admissions to emergency care, and a 67% reduction in total hospital visits. People who took care of their teeth tended to save $1,020 on average, which could cover some dental implant cost.

This would affect quite a number of Americans, since the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that 47% of those aged 30 or over suffer from periodontitis. Based on a study posted in the Journal for Dental Research, age really did take a toll. By age 65, the sample of just under 3,750 people found that over 60% had “moderate or severe” periodontitis. This leads to teeth that decay quickly or fall out, leading to dental implants cost, which could be prevented or reduced by the simplest measures: brushing, flossing, and having teeth cleaned regularly. In the same way that people often know it's necessary to eat more fruits and vegetables, and engage in regular exercise, Dr. Kanani says that this advice is often ignored.

Obesity certainly contributes to a lack of dental health, as well. Type 2 diabetes tends to be associated with excess weight, and the American Academy of Periodontology has said that periodontal disease is more likely with diabetic patients. This can be a vicious circle, since severe periodontal disease can lead to higher glucose levels, which in turn increases the body's resistance to sugar, which feeds the diabetic cycle. Extra exercise can cut down on weight, insulin resistance, and the risk for gum disease, indicated a study on Jordan residents mentioned in Medscape. Inflammation in one part of the body can lead to another, which is why heart disease can't be ruled out as a related matter of gum disease.

Another reason why dentists are wary of lip and tongue piercings, besides the damage done to teeth, is that they may increase already high risk factors between gum disease and oral cancer. In June 2012, Medical News Today discussed a recent study done on the link between human papillomavirus (HPV), head and neck cancers, and periodontitis. Though there have not been enough studies to conclude cause-and-effect, it seems clear that severe, untreated periodontitis does seem to have a connection with oral cancer and HPV. A Bloomberg report expanded on that link, indicating that bone loss can be an early warning sign of HPV. “Those who were HPV positive had higher rates of alveolar bone loss around the teeth, the researchers found. Each millimeter of bone loss was associated with a 2.6 times increased risk of a HPV-positive tumor.” Dr. Kanani says that this in itself is a reason for patients to add regular dental checkups to a regimen of personal hygiene – to check for warning signs of periodontitis and oral cancer.

Dr. Kaveh Kanani was a biology graduate from CSU (California State University) that went on to New York University for his doctorate, and residency at Woodhall Hospital. After a series of Maxi courses, Dr. Kanani worked as an associate of southern California facilities such as the West Los Angeles Dental Health Institute and South Bay Dental. The American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID), the only dental implant association recognized by the court system, awarded him an Associate Fellowship. He has been trained in several AAID MaxiCourses®, which can take up to 10 months to complete.

To learn more about this procedure, sedation dentistry, and Dr. Kanani, visit http://woodlandhillsdentalspa.com/, or call (818) 962-1141 to consult with Dr. Kanani, and find out if dental implants are your best option.

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