Obesity linked to higher risk of perio disease

Obesity, which impacts roughly one-third of the U.S. population, has been linked to periodontal disease, according to an article published in the January/February 2013 issue of General Dentistry.

Obese individuals' bodies relentlessly produce cytokines, proteins with inflammatory properties, noted lead author Charlene Krejci, DDS, MSD. These cytokines may directly injure the periodontal tissues or reduce blood flow to these tissues, thus promoting the development of periodontal disease.

Periodontal disease itself produces its own set of cytokines, which further increases the level of these inflammatory proteins in the body's bloodstream, helping to set off a chain reaction of other inflammatory diseases throughout the body.

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