Personal Challenge #7: Floss Like Your Life Depends on It

Candy Hearts

Researchers found that people with gum disease were two-and-a-half times more likely than those with healthy gums to experience a medical “event” related to heart disease.

This challenge is to floss everyday for two weeks. You know you should. You remember all the things that your dentist tells you with every visit. You want to grow old with your teeth. It isn’t hard. It doesn’t take long. So, why not?

Now for the clarification on that “two-and-a-half times more likely to have a heart attack” statistic: Statistics lie. Although there are several theories that could explain a causal link. In truth, many of the risk factors for heart disease and the risk factors for gum disease are the same. When you try to factor out these common risk factors out of the data, there is not enough correlation in these studies’ sample sizes to confirm causality.

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2 comments so far

  1. curt on

    Will start this one tonight. Iam a floss-slacker. (Though I doubt flossing has any direct correlation to heart disease. I would posit that those who floss regularly also tend to embrace other healthy habits (like eating well and getting exercixe) which contribute to a healthy heart).

    Curt

  2. Floss2x on

    Hi there came across your website and this Challenge thought I’d offer some insight:
    There is a direct link for oral health and heart disease. That link lies within the bacteria that is in your mouth. With further progression of gingivitis and periodontal diease, the bacteria can travel in the blood stream to the heart attach themselves to the vessels and valves and build up causing an infection; infective (bacterial) endocarditis. This is why some people have to take pre-medication because their systemic diseases put them at a higher risk for this infection, when invasive dental treatment is being performed. Research HAS shown that those with periodontal disease are twice as likely to suffer from coronary artery disease as those without periodontal disease, because there is research behind it to back it up.
    Not only will flossing twice a day increase your oral health, but it increases your overall health and well-being. Cleaner mouth = less disease in the body; means your immune system isn’t compromised because it is trying to fight off the infections in your mouth, leaving you more open to other infections.
    Remember: Gingivitis is completely revesible, periodonal disease (bone and attachment destruction/loss) is NOT but it CAN be maintained!
    When seeing a Dental Hygienist that is what their focus is on, the client’s OVERALL health and well being, not JUST cleaning their teeth. 🙂


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