What you need to know about COVID-19 and gum health

By Theresa Pablos, DrBicuspid.com editor in chief

February 23, 2021 -- February is Gum Disease Awareness Month, and it couldn't be timelier as new research indicates COVID-19 is related to gum health. American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) President Dr. James Wilson sat down with DrBicuspid.com to discuss the link between the novel coronavirus and oral health.

Wilson discussed new findings in the Journal of Clinical Periodontology that showed patients with periodontal disease were more likely to have worse COVID-19 outcomes, including admittance to the intensive care unit (ICU) and even death. Although more research is needed, inflammation could be one factor behind the relationship, Wilson said.

He also pointed to research showing that COVID-19 may present with tongue lesions, such as scalloped tongue and geographic tongue. The AAP is one of several organizations looking for more information on whether these lesions are truly related to COVID-19, Wilson said.

"Those are such common lesions that we're not definite that that's actually related to COVID-19, so we're asking for more research to be done in those areas," he noted.

See the full discussion in the video below.

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