According to a recent study, published in the Journal of JAMA Network Open, common oral infection in childhood is linked with an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis in adulthood.
The deposition of fatty material on their inner walls of the arteries is called atherosclerosis.
"The observation is novel since there are no earlier follow-up studies on childhood oral infections and the risk of cardiovascular diseases," said researcher Pirkko Pussinen.
As per the findings of the study, various progressed oral infections and inflammations are known to be linked with several cardiovascular disease risk and risk factors; however, Periodontitis in particular is considered an independent risk factor for atherosclerotic vascular diseases.
The study was initiated in 1980 and clinical oral examinations were conducted. In both childhood and adulthood, the cumulative exposure to the cardiovascular risk factor was calculated.
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After being studied extensively, the treatment of Periodontitis is also known to decrease cardiovascular risk factors.
While the study was being conducted, caries, fillings, bleeding on probing, and probing pocket depth were a few signs of oral infections and inflammation.
The researchers emphasise, in conclusion, "Oral infections were an independent risk factor for subclinical atherosclerosis, and their association with cardiovascular risk factors persevered through the entire follow-up. Prevention and treatment of oral infections are important already in childhood."