Your Gum Disease May Be Linked to Your Stroke Risk


Red, swollen gums may not seem important. But they may signal a greater risk for something that could change your life dramatically: a stroke.

Individuals with periodontal disease may be at greater risk for ischemic strokes, those strokes caused by a lack of blood reaching part of the brain, according to a new study.

Researchers followed more than 6,000 adults who not previously had a stroke for 15 years after checking them for periodontal disease. During that period, there were 299 ischemic strokes.

The connection between the strokes and periodontal disease was noticeable. Study participants with even mild periodontal disease were 1.9 times more likely to have an ischemic stroke than those without periodontal disease. 

The study was presented at the American Heart Association’s International Stroke Conference.


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