Why is the Future of Dentistry team wearing pink in this photo? It’s because October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. We wanted to show our support for the important cause of breast cancer awareness. Everyone working on Oct. 7 wore pink!
As we often tell patients, your oral care is connected to your overall wellness. Breast cancer is one of many diseases and illnesses that are linked to dental health, specifically to periodontal disease (gum disease).
In a recent study of postmenopausal women, the risk of breast cancer was 14 percent higher in women who had gum disease. The incidence was even higher — 32-36% — among women with gum disease who smoke or have a history of smoking.
Researchers have two possible theories to explain the cause:
- Systemic inflammation from gum disease may affect breast tissue.
- Bacteria from the mouth may enter the circulatory system and affect breast tissue.
Other studies have also linked gum disease and breast cancer. Scientists believe further research will help reveal the reason the two diseases are connected, which could help prevent breast cancer.
In the meantime, prevention of gum disease starts with you. Maintaining good habits will help prevent periodontal disease before it starts. Home care is important for protecting your gums and teeth: brushing, flossing and rinsing at least twice a day. The other part of prevention is visiting the dentist’s office for your biannual cleaning and exam. The clinical team will keep an eye out for early signs of gum disease, among other things.
If you already have periodontal disease, it’s crucial to stick to the schedule of visits recommended by your dentist and follow the personalized plan outlined by our team. When you put your gums and teeth first, you’re putting your health first.