Poor oral hygiene is now being linked to stomach cancer, also known as “gastric” cancer. Researchers studied 35 people with abnormal cells or sores in their digestive tract and compared them to a control group of 70 people who did not have these kinds of lesions.
Thirty-two percent of the individuals with the abnormal cells or sores also bled during dental exams which is one indicator of periodontal disease. It’s thought that certain types of periodontal bacteria that cause infection lead to systemic inflammation which contributes to the gastric cancer.
While more research is certainly needed, and this particular study was small, the findings point to continued evidence that poor oral health contributes to systemic disease.
According to study leader Dr. Yihong Li, as reported in Cancer Therapy Advisor, “In addition to gastrointestinal cancer, there is increasing evidence for an association between chronic periodontal disease and different types of cancer…”
The results provide yet another study linking linking poor oral hygiene and periodontal disease to other systemic issues. And yet another occasion for us here at the Pennsylvania Center for Dental Implants and Periodontics to urge you to brush, floss and see your dentist regularly!