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What is the Connection Between Gum Disease and Lung Cancer?

Posted on 7/13/2019 by Dr. Karl Zeren
What is the Connection Between Gum Disease and Lung Cancer?If you're dealing with gum disease, you may assume that's the only issue you have. However, gum disease has actually been connected to an increased risk of lung cancer. A number of studies have made the connection between these two health concerns and show that those who have gum disease need to be concerned about developing lung cancer.

Gum Disease Leaves the Body Open to More Infections

One of the major reasons gum disease can lead to lung cancer and other health issues is that it leaves the body open to bacteria and other infections. It also increases the amount of inflammation not only in the mouth, but in the body overall. This inflammation may be the link between lung cancer and gum disease, although scientists were still uncertain of what, exactly, ties the two together.

Other Cancers Are Also Linked to Gum Disease

One study found that men with periodontal disease were about 15% more likely to develop cancer overall and were about 35% more likely to develop lung cancer. Kidney and pancreatic cancers were also linked to gum disease.

Stop Smoking

One way of reducing your risk of lung cancer overall is to stop smoking. The study found that men who had never smoked did not have an increased risk of lung cancer, even if they had dealt with gum disease numerous times. Those who lived a fairly healthy lifestyle were also at less risk of developing cancer, regardless of whether or not they had gum disease.

Overall, more studies are necessary to determine exactly how gum disease is linked to lung cancer and other types of cancer. However, it is fairly clear that there is a link of some sort, and that means it's more important than ever to brush regularly.

You also need to be sure you come see us every six months so that we can check your gums for signs of damage. Call today to make an appointment.

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