Gum disease can increase risk of breast cancer

Did you know gum diseases are associated with other diseases, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes and breast cancer?

Mild gum disease, known as gingivitis, and more serious infections such as periodontitis can bring bacteria into the bloodstream. A variety of studies have connected gum diseases and other, seemingly unrelated conditions.

A 2015 study in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention found that periodontal disease – an infection of the gums – was associated with an increased risk of postmenopausal breast caner. The risk was higher among women who had been smokers. Read the abstract of “Periodontal Disease and Breast Cancer: Prospective Cohort Study of Postmenopausal Women.”

You can take care of your gums by brushing your teeth regularly and seeing a dentist at least once a year. Make an appointment if you have any symptoms of gum disease, including:

  • red/swollen gums
  • tender/bleeding gums
  • loose teeth
  • bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth that won’t go way
  • gums that have pulled away from your teeth
  • sensitive teeth