The link between periodontal disease and upper respiratory diseases
from Inside Dentistry
A recent study by Sharma and Shamsuddin published in the January 2011 issue of the Journal of Periodontology suggests a possible link between upper respiratory diseases — including pneumonia, acute bronchitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease — and periodontal disease. Typically occurring when bacteria are inhaled into the lungs, the bacteria that cause periodontal disease also can be inhaled into the respiratory tract and increase the risk of infection. The study examined 200 people, 100 who had been hospitalized with a respiratory infection, and 100 who were healthy. The study results demonstrated that those who were part of the healthy group had better periodontal health, while the periodontal health of those with respiratory illnesses was worse.
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