Gum disease: How the mouth condition can impact a women’s fertility – shocking side effect

Gum disease: How the mouth condition can impact a women’s fertility – shocking side effect

Gum disease: Dentist explains how you can prevent it

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According to emerging research, dental health may not only impact how long it takes a woman to conceive but may also cause infertility. Twin dentists Hussein and Hassan Dalghous – founders of Yorkshire Dental Suite spoke exclusively with to offer their insight.

“Gum disease is known to affect more than just gums, as we see increasing amounts of data and research looking into how chronic inflammation can affect the body as a whole,” they began.

“Periodontal disease, a severe form of gum disease, is a chronic, infectious and inflammatory disease of the gums and supporting tissues. 

“The first signs that you may have gum disease and that you may spot at home, are bleeding gums when you brush your teeth.

“Unfortunately, a large proportion of the adult population have gum disease to some degree.”

When asked why gum disease is so dangerous for a person’s overall health, the Daglhous brothers answered: “Inflammation!”

“The inflammation caused by periodontal disease initiates a cascade of events that can lead to tissue destruction and the process of inflammation can pass into the blood circulation,” they said.

“As a result, it is now known that periodontal disease has been associated with heart disease, type 2 diabetes, respiratory and kidney disease and problems in pregnancy such as miscarriage and premature birth.  

“We recognise that chronic inflammation anywhere in the body can affect systemic health, as the process enters the blood circulation.

“We also recognise that the main cause of chronic inflammation in the body is gum disease.”

When asked how gum disease can impact a women’s fertility, the brothers answered: “The first report to suggest that gum disease might be one of several factors that could be modified to improve the chances of a pregnancy was released by the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE). 

“Researchers followed a group of 3,737 pregnant women, analysing pregnancy planning and pregnancy outcomes for 3,416 of them.

“They found that women with gum disease took an average of over seven months to become pregnant – longer than the average number of months that it took women without gum disease to conceive.”

The data in the study suggested that the presence of periodontal disease was a modifiable risk factor, which can increase a woman’s ability to conceive.

It showed that periodontal disease exerted as much of a negative influence on fertility as obesity.  

“If you are trying to get pregnant, or you’re thinking about improving your chances of conceiving, then visiting your dentist/hygienist may be a good step in that direction,” the brothers advised.

“Overall optimal health is what is best when trying for a baby and we suggest that improving oral health and stabilising gum disease may be more important in that process than you think.”

Tips to reduce gum disease include:

  • Have a gum health screening with a periodontist/gum health specialist, ideally pre-conception to reduce your risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes
  • If you do have gum disease early intervention is the key
  • If you don’t have gum disease prevention is the key as pregnancy can increase your risk of developing symptoms
  • If you are already pregnant remember that treatment for gum disease is safe for you and your unborn baby
  • Learn and practise optimal oral hygiene techniques from a professional
  • Electric Toothbrushing
  • Interdental (between the teeth) cleaning
  • Tongue cleaning
  • Ask your periodontist about gum probiotics to help in both the treatment and prevention of gum disease.

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