Good oral health aids in successful treatment of high blood pressure

26 October 2018

New research, published in the American Heart Association's journal Hypertension, suggests that people with healthier gums not only have lower blood pressure but respond better to medications that lower blood pressure. 

An analysis of the medical and dental exam records of more than 3600 people with high blood pressure would seem to indicate that the presence of periodontal disease “may interfere with the effectiveness of blood pressure therapy.” 

The research specifically noted that people with periodontal disease were 20 percent less likely to reach the target blood pressure range for people with hypertension, indicating, in the words of study lead investigator Davide Pietropaoli, D.D.S., Ph.D. (University of L'Aquila in Italy) “that good oral health may be just as important in controlling the condition as are several lifestyle interventions known to help control blood pressure, such as a low-salt diet, regular exercise and weight control.” 

He went on to encourage a closer working relationship between physicians and dentists in the treatment of hypertension. 

"Physicians should pay close attention to patients' oral health, particularly those receiving treatment for hypertension, and urge those with signs of periodontal disease to seek dental care. Likewise, dental health professionals should be aware that oral health is indispensable to overall physiological health, including cardiovascular status.” 

(source: News Medical Life Sciences)