Can bacteria in the mouth affect the heart?

Poor dental health increases the risk of a bacterial infection in the bloodstream, which can affect the heart valves. Oral health can be particularly important if you have artificial heart valves. The primary cause of gum disease is harmful oral bacteria found in dental plaque and tartar. Oral bacteria can travel through gum tissues to the bloodstream, throughout the body, and to the heart valves and heart.

The bacteria can cause inflammation throughout the body, which can cause major arteries to narrow, leading to a heart attack and stroke. 1 And it can cause an infection in the bloodstream that could cause a heart attack. Gum disease can increase a person's risk of heart disease by up to 20 percent. In relation to the model of systemic inflammation, it is hypothesized that the cytokines and inflammatory mediators produced in periodontal disease act systemically to promote systemic disease.

In addition, the release of bacteria and bacterial by-products, such as LPS, into the circulation can also trigger a systemic inflammatory response. Increased levels of circulating cytokines can activate vascular endothelial cells and ultimately lead to the development of atherosclerosis. In addition to activating inflammatory cells, bacterial LPS can trigger and improve atherosclerosis by increasing oxidative stress and modifying lipid metabolism (13). Usually red or yellow in color, mouth sores are painful sores that can appear inside the mouth and also on the outside of the lips.).