New research links dental work to lower risk of heart disease
Health officials in Washington state are warning that dental work may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.
The findings, published Monday in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, were based on a nationally representative, two-year study of the medical records of more than 12,000 people in Washington and five other states.
The researchers found that people who did not practice dentistry had an average of three lower-than-average risks of heart attack, stroke and death, compared with those who did.
The researchers found a similar effect among people who were never teethpicks, a measure of their dental care habits.
“Dentistry is associated with lower rates of mortality for people with heart disease,” Dr. Andrew Miller, an associate professor at the University of Washington and the study’s lead author, said in a statement.
“It’s important to remember that there are many ways to prevent cardiovascular disease and this study suggests dental care does not appear to be the only factor.”
Miller’s team, which included researchers from the University Health Network, University of California, San Francisco and other universities, looked at medical records from patients who were in their 50s or older, had not had a previous heart attack or stroke, had no chronic diseases, were not obese and did not smoke or take prescription medication. “
There is evidence that dental care is an effective way to prevent coronary heart diseases.”
Miller’s team, which included researchers from the University Health Network, University of California, San Francisco and other universities, looked at medical records from patients who were in their 50s or older, had not had a previous heart attack or stroke, had no chronic diseases, were not obese and did not smoke or take prescription medication.
They also looked at the health status of people who had never had a heart attack and stroke.
The study found that dentists were at an increased risk of having a heart condition or stroke.
Those who had a history of heart problems, including a history in the previous year of having an abnormal heart rhythm or blood pressure, had a higher risk of developing heart disease or stroke than those who had not been exposed to dental work, or those who were younger than 65.
The average number of strokes and heart attacks per 1,000 person-years in the study population was 1.4, compared to 1.3 for people who never had any dental work or had no dental health history.
The results suggest that dental patients with a history or history of cardiovascular disease, as well as those with a past history of stroke, are more likely to develop heart disease than people without a history.
“Our results support the idea that dental treatment is a good risk factor for cardiovascular disease,” Miller said.
Dental care can also reduce the likelihood of developing diabetes, which can lead to higher blood sugar levels.
The American Diabetes Association says that about one-third of Americans have diabetes and that some 20 million Americans have the condition.
The dental work did not significantly affect the risk for cardiovascular events, including death.
The study also found that those who never did dental work had a slightly higher risk for stroke and heart attack than those whose history included dental work.
The research was funded by the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the American Dental Association.