Scientists know that suffering from inflammation of the gums, whether it is gingivitis or periodontitis, causes the risk of also suffering from cardiovascular disease. They suspect that inflammatory factors enter the bloodstream through the gums and damage the vascular system.
Researchers at Mount Royal University, Canada, therefore set out to determine whether signs of oral inflammation could be clinically relevant for assessing cardiovascular health in young and apparently healthy patients.
Just rinse your mouth with a saline solution
for their study, they recruited 28 non-smokers between the ages of 18 and 30, with no comorbidities or medications likely to affect cardiovascular risk, and no reported history of periodontal disease. In the lab, they asked them to rinse their mouths with a saline solution which was then collected for analysis. The participants then lay down to undergo an electrocardiogram.
The scientists then found that a high level of white blood cells in saliva had “a significant relationship with poor flow-mediated dilation” (a measure of the arteries’ ability to dilate), “suggesting that these people may be at high risk for cardiovascular disease.
“This mouth rinse test could be used during an annual visit to the dentist,” said study co-author Dr. Michael Glogauer of the University of Toronto. This would make it possible to determine which patients are most at risk of cardiovascular disease, and who will have to be followed by the doctor.
Source : Oral inflammatory load predicts vascular function in a young adult population: a pilot studyFrontiers Oral healt, August 2023