Older Women With Tooth Loss Prone to High Blood Pressure

img AD Ratings imgApril 26, 2019




Postmenopausal women who have experienced some degree of tooth loss are at a higher risk of developing high blood pressure. Research establishing the link was published in the American Journal of Hypertension in December 2018.

The study’s conclusions mirror other such studies showing a palpable link between periodontal disease, tooth loss, and hypertension, but the exact cause remains unclear. The research involved 36,692 postmenopausal women under the Women’s Health Initiative-Observational Study. The women reported their periodontal assessment since 1998 all through 2015 and then informed annually about their dental health updates and any newly diagnosed hypertension.

Based on the data collected, the scientists found a startling link: postmenopausal women suffering from periodontal disease and tooth loss are at a 20% higher risk of developing high blood pressure or hypertension compared to their counterparts, reported Science Daily. The study additionally found that younger women having a lower BMI (body mass index) were also susceptible to the same.

How Tooth Loss is Associated With Hypertension

The primary reason behind the link was the change in diet following a tooth loss. People who lose their teeth make a shift to softer and more processed foods. Food high in sodium, like most processed food items, tend to heighten people’s blood pressure.

The study states that older postmenopausal women are inclined to lose their teeth owing to age and declining calcium retention. The tooth loss may put this group at a higher risk of developing hypertension.

However, the researchers said that an improved dental hygiene routine would reduce the risk of tooth loss. If supplemented with preventive measures such as dietary modification, physical activity, weight loss, and closer blood pressure monitoring, the risk of hypertension can be reduced. The researchers also suggest using tooth loss as a hypertension risk cautionary sign.

Jean Wactawski-Wende, the paper’s senior, author said, “These findings suggest tooth loss may be an important factor in the development of hypertension. Further research may help us to determine the underlying mechanisms by which these two common diseases are associated,” reported Science Daily.

 

 

 

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