When gum disease gets severe, it can potentially turn into periodontitis. It's a problem that can not only cause tooth loss, but have other effects that are unrelated to your mouth. Make sure you understand these four ways periodontitis can affect your overall health.

Heart Disease

If you get periodontitis, your potential risk of developing heart disease will be much greater than if your gums were healthy. Dentists say that your odds almost double. While bacteria can destroy tissue in your mouth in the form of a gum infection, the impact on your arteries is much worse. Once the bacteria gets to the arteries, it can cause plaque buildup that increases your risk of a heart attack.


Another potential problem of having periodontitis is a stroke. The reason that periodontitis can cause a stroke is similar to why it can cause heart disease. The main difference is that once the disease reaches the brain, it will create plaque that clogs arteries inside the brain. If you do suffer from periodontitis, you are 263% more likely to have a complication with a stroke, compared to if your gums were healthy.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

The inflammatory disorder known as rheumatoid arthritis affects your joint's tissues. Since it is an autoimmune disorder, it happens when your body's immune system starts attacking healthy tissue. Periodontitis can have a big impact on this condition.

There have been studies performed that show how periodontitis can cause rheumatoid arthritis symptoms to be more severe when compared to those without gum disease or those that have mild periodontitis. Researchers are unclear as to why periodontitis has this kind of impact on rheumatoid arthritis, but one theory is that your joints and gums have similar cells, which cause them to react similarly to an infection.


Periodontitis can have a surprising effect when it comes to increasing your chance of developing a severe form of asthma. Asthma will cause respiratory problems like wheezing, coughing, and difficulty breathing. In some severe cases, asthma can lead to death. A study has discovered that people who have periodontitis have a 500% greater chance of developing a form of severe asthma compared to those that don't have periodontitis.

Now that you are aware of these four ways that periodontitis can impact your health, you understand how more than just your mouth is at risk when you have gum disease. That is why you should visit your dentist to prevent your gum disease from getting worse than it is. 

To learn more, contact a center like Arbor Dental Care Ltd.