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Good oral care could save your life


According to a recent scientific study, failing to brush your teeth properly could have a serious impact on the health of your heart. Researchers from the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin have revealed that harmful bacteria found in the mouth can cause life-threatening blood clots, and could also trigger the rare condition infective endocarditis.

The killer bug – called streptococcus gordonii – enters the bloodstream through bleeding gums and thickens the blood, causing it to clot. Inside the thick clots, the bacteria are protected from the body’s natural defences and any antibiotics that might be prescribed, leaving it free to cause havoc with the immune system and organ function. Infective endocarditis could develop if the clots grow on the valves of the heart; a dangerous and possibly fatal condition.

Scientists from Bristol University were also involved in the study and joined their colleagues from Dublin at a conference last week for the Society for General Microbiology. Both sets of researchers are hoping to create a new drug to combat infective endocarditis and prevent blood clots forming on the heart.

Professor Damien Walmsley, of the British Dental Association, spoke of similar results after a study in 2010; ‘The findings contribute to our understanding of the relationship between gum disease and heart disease. It also underlines the importance of brushing teeth twice a day.’

Emergency dentistry prevention ‘could also improve lung health’


Improved lung health could be an additional benefit for people who look after their teeth, a new report suggests.New research suggests people who avoid needing emergency dentistry by keeping their teeth and gums healthy could be achieving other positive health outcomes.

American Academy of Periodontology president and practising dentist Donald S Clem carried out a study that demonstrated links between good periodontal health and improved lung health.

The report was published in the Journal of Periodontology and found that the participants in the project who had been hospitalised with lung problems tended to have worse teeth and gums than people who had not suffered such illnesses.

Researchers suggested bacteria that cause periodontal disorders may be inhaled into the respiratory system and cause problems for patients.

Among the illnesses people may be avoiding by maintaining healthy teeth and gums – and not requiring emergency dentistry – are pneumonia and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Separate research carried out by Bristol University professor of oral microbiology Howard Jenkinson has also linked dental issues with heart attacks and strokes.


Dental techniques could identify ancient princess


Dentistry could hold the key to identifying the remains of an ancient English princess.

The remains of an ancient princess could possibly be identified through the use of dental techniques employed by scientists from Bristol University. dental xray

Professor David Horton, of the university’s archaeology department, is working to discover whether the remains of a body found in Germany are the missing English princess Eadgyth – pronounced Edith.

The skeleton has been dated to the tenth century and work is now being carried out using dental enamel analysis to discover whether the remains are truly hers.

Elsewhere, researchers from Bristol University recently announced they had been able to uncover some insights into the habits of our ancestors by studying the dental remains of a child that was found in Portugal.

The remains of a child that lived 30,000 years ago were uncovered in 1998 in the Abrigo do Lagar Velho region and ever since scientists have been working on them trying to determine how humans have evolved over this period.

Wisdom teeth ‘could require emergency dentistry’


Brits could have problems with their wisdom teeth

When an individual’s wisdom teeth come through – usually between the ages of 18 and 25 – it can be a time when emergency dentistry treatments are required, it has been claimed. emergency dentistry

According to the Western Mail, wisdom teeth can often cause many problems for a person, as over time the human jaw has shrunk, resulting in some people not having room for these new molars.

In total, the human mouth contains 28 teeth until the wisdom teeth come through, this then rises to 32 teeth. In most cases, they will come in without a problem, but if they come in “impacted” then a dentist may be called in to take a look.

“This is when the problems begin, because if part of the tooth has come through and the rest is still covered, the gum may become sore and swollen,” the publication noted.

Elsewhere, researchers from Bristol University recently revealed the skeleton a child that had lived 30,000 years ago recently showed the teeth of our ancestors were very similar to those of modern humans.

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