Fat Cells and Gum Disease
Could your weight be affecting your dental health? According to a new study from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, it may be. The study included more than 30 patients who were both obese and suffering from gum disease. Half of these patients, who had an average BMI of 39, had gastric bypass surgery. The other half did not undergo bypass surgery, but they did have a lower average BMI of 35.
At the beginning of the study, all of the patients had scaling and root planing procedures. This is a deep cleaning procedure that removes plaque and tartar from above and below the gumline. They were also provided with in-depth oral hygiene counseling. All patients experienced some improvement in their gum health. Patients who had the gastric bypass procedures had the greatest improvements, however. They had less plaque accumulation, improved periodontal attachment and reduced gum bleeding.
Researchers theorized that the results may be related to the reduced levels of leptin, which is associated with inflammation. However, they also noted that insulin resistance may also have played a role. Our Northridge dentist encourages patients to take a whole-body approach to dental health. Maintaining a healthy diet and exercise program can often help you achieve improved dental health. The right diet can provide your gums with the nutrients they need to stay healthy while exercise can help you maintain a healthier body weight.