Persistent dental plaque increases risk of dying early from cancer

Bloomberg News “Persistent dental plaque may increase the risk of dying early from cancer.” This is “according to authors of a study published in the journal BMJ Open.”

Investigators found that “dental-plaque levels were higher in the 35 people who died from cancer than in the rest of the 1,400 study participants tracked over 24 years in Sweden.”

The authors conclude, “Based on the present findings, the high bacterial load on tooth surfaces and in gingival pockets over a prolonged time may indeed play a role in carcinogenesis. Therefore, the control of oral biofilm, in order to reduce the burden of the microbial noxa from the mouth, seems important to combat this development. Further studies are definitely required, however, to determine whether there is any causal element in the observed association reported here.”

This is another reason to (1) floss and/or brush after every meal, and (2) get that dental hygiene visit once or twice a year.

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