C-reactive protein

Can a Toothpaste Help Prevent Heart Attacks or Strokes?

March 21st, 2020

Our immune response to illness and injury is pretty amazing. Inflammation is our body's defense mechanism to help our body heal, however, chronic inflammation can sometimes cause harm to our bodies. When arteries become blocked by a buildup of plaque, a composition of fat, cholesterol, calcium, and other substances, this can initiate an inflammatory response that can increase your risk of developing a heart attack or stroke. And, it's no secret that oral health has been connected with many systemic inflammatory diseases, as inflammation significantly affects the oral cavity. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that 47.2% of Americans over the age of 30 have some form of periodontal disease, which is a pathological inflammatory disease of the gums and oral tissues that surround the teeth. Inflammation within the body is measured by high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), which circulates throughout the blood and increases in response to inflammation. Doctor's can monitor the amount of hs-CRP in the blood to help lower the risk of having a heart attack or stroke.
Now, new research has suggested that the first toothpaste to identify dental plaque, Plaque HD®, may help to lower the risk of heart attacks and strokes by lowering C-reactive protein! The study, published in the American Journal of Medicine, conducted by researchers from Florida Atlantic University's Schmidt College of Medicine, Marshfield Clinic Research Institute, and the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health looked at whether or not the toothpaste Plaque HD® reduces hs-CRP in individuals. Plaque HD® helps make dental plaque visible on the surfaces of teeth in addition to weakening the dental plaque so that it can easily be removed with regular toothbrushing. Participants of the study were randomly split into groups, one group with Plaque HD® toothpaste, and the other group with a similar non-plaque identifying placebo toothpaste. The participants were monitored for 30 days. It was found that those who used Plaque HD® toothpaste had a statistically significant reduction in hs-CRP in comparison with the placebo group. However, more research is needed to determine if the Plaque HD® toothpaste directly correlates to a decrease in heart attacks or strokes.

Remember that it is important to take care of your teeth and practice good oral hygiene habits to help keep a healthy body.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment.

Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist, Dr. Derek, and Dr. Emad is happy to help with your TMJ and orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other oral surgery needs, Dr. Stephens would love to help, and our gum-specialist Dr. Singh can help with your gum-related concerns.





Brush Your Teeth, Your Heart Will Thank You

November 11th, 2018

Who would have thought that your dentist would be telling you how to help prevent heart disease? It’s commonly known that smoking, a poor diet, lack of exercise, and an uncontrolled weight can impact your heart. However, did you know that brushing your teeth is linked with maintaining a healthy heart? Research published in Scotland revealed that brushing your teeth can lower your risk of experiencing a heart attack or other issues impacting your heart.

Heart disease is a serious problem that unfortunately impacts a lot of people. According to the American Heart Association, about 2,600 people in the United States die each day from a heart attack, heart failure, or stroke. The study looked at approximately 12,000 women and men and observed their oral health habits, daily exercise, and smoking habits. About 60% of the individuals reported seeing a dentist every 6 months, and approximately 70% reported brushing their teeth two times each day. Those who stated brushing their teeth less often were found to have a 70% increased risk of heart disease and had increased amounts of C-reactive protein and fibrinogen, which are found in the blood indicating inflammation. Inflammation is a significant finding related to poor oral hygiene and atherosclerosis (accumulation of fat substances around artery walls). Periodontal disease, which is a chronic condition impacting the gums and tissues around teeth, is a result of poor oral hygiene and adds to the inflammatory response. Some signs of periodontal disease include red and swollen gums, bleeding gums when eating or brushing and flossing, pus or infection around gums, poor taste in your mouth, and loose teeth.

The American Heart Association also conducted a recent study analyzing brushing frequency in 682 participants and the link to heart disease risk. Those who stated brushing their teeth less than two times a day for less than two minutes had a 3 times higher risk of developing heart disease than those brushing for the recommended two times a day for 2 minutes or more. More research is needed to determine whether or not the link is a cause and effect relationship.

Practicing good oral hygiene habits and scheduling regular dental visits can help not only keep your smile healthy but also help keep your heart and overall health in check.

Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and their newest addition to the team, Dr. Zarah Ali, if you have any thoughts or concerns. Your little ones and teens are welcome to visit our pediatric dentist Dr. Van. Dr. Emad is happy to help with your orthodontic needs. For wisdom teeth extractions or any other periodontal or oral surgery needs, Dr. Ghazi would be more than willing to help.

The caring team at Wellesley Dental Group will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.








The Link Between Periodontal Disease and Diabetes

June 13th, 2013

26 million adults are known to be affected by diabetes. Statistics show that 1 out of 10 healthcare dollars are spent on diabetes. The link between periodontal disease and diabetes has been extensively studied over the past 50 years. There is strong evidence that diabetes is a risk factor for periodontitis and gingivitis. A study dating back to more than 30 years ago has already shown that children suffering from type 1 diabetes had a higher prevalence of gingival inflammation. Ervasti et al. examined patients with gingival bleeding and determined that there was greater amount of bleeding in patients with poorly controlled diabetes when compared to subjects that do not have diabetes and subjects with well-controlled diabetes. Research has also shown that types with type 2 diabetes also tend to have more gingival inflammation than the control group in the study.

Studies also show that the risk of developing periodontitis is increased when one has diabetes. Teenagers with type 1 diabetes have been found to be five times more likely to develop periodontitis. Research also supports the idea that there may be more bone loss linked to adults with diabetes. Subjects suffering from type 2 diabetes are three times more likely to develop periodontitis compared to subjects without diabetes.

Doctors were able to pinpoint the root cause of this relationship between diabetes and periodontal disease. There is a protein known as the c-reactive protein (CRP), which is found in the blood stream. CRP levels rise with inflammation of blood vessels, which has been linked to type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Researchers have also shown that CRP is continuously produced in the presence of periodontal diseases. It is important to note that an individual cannot keep diabetes under control if he or she is also suffering from periodontal disease. It is absolutely crucial that diabetic patients maintain good oral health to keep CRP at bay.

Periodontal disease can affect your general health; read more here.

If you have any more questions, feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group; they will be happy to answer your questions! They can assess the risk of periodontal disease and if need be our periodontist, Dr. Ghazwan Ghazi, can help.Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com to set up an appointment and consultation.


Cianciola L, Park B, Bruck E, Mosovich L, Genco R. Prevalence of periodontal disease
in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (juvenile diabetes). JADA

Ervasti L, Knuuttila M, Pohjamo L, Haukipuro K. Relation between control of
diabetes and gingival bleeding. J Periodontol 1985;56(3):154-7.




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