In the past, many physicians and dentists have recommended delaying needed dental treatment for up to six months because of a recent heart attack. A group of researchers from the University of Minnesota studied over 2,000 patients who suffered a recent heart attack, over 400 of whom suffered a repeat event while in the survey. The researchers found no relationship between dental treatment within 30 to 180 days after a heart attack and a repeat heart attack. Their article “Dental procedures and risk of experiencing a second vascular event in a Medicare population” was published in the November 2012 issue of the Journal of the American Dental Association.
The conclusion: the traditional recommendation to delay needed dental treatment for as long as 6 months after a heart attack should be reassessed.
There have been many studies in the past decades proposing an association between periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease. As a result, some authors have deduced a causative relationship — that is, it has been hypothesized that periodontal treatment can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. The American Heart Association convened a committee of experts who reviewed the available evidence and concluded that while there is evidence of an association between dental disease and cardiovascular disease, there is no evidence of a causative relationship. This April 2012 American Heart Association statement was endorsed by the American Dental Association and the World Heart Association, and it is entitled “Periodontal Disease and Atherosclerotic Vascular Disease: Does the Evidence Support an Independent Association?”
We recommend treating periodontal disease because good dental health is part of your overall health, but we do not recommend this dental treatment as a way to prevent cardiovascular disease. To prevent cardiovascular disease, diet and exercise are recommended along with the recommendations of your primary care physician or cardiologist.
Dr. Mike’s daughter Kira’s essay “Fire Safety in the Kitchen” was chosen as 1st place for 5th grade in the Red Clay School District. She then moved on to the countywide contest and received 1st place in that on November 18, 2012.
In January, her essay will be competing against the first place essays from Kent and Sussex Counties for first place in Delaware. Congratulations Kira! Perhaps we’ll have a bonfire to celebrate! (Just kidding.)
Dr. Mike and Tina visited Mrs. Wilt’s 2nd grade class at Mount Pleasant Elementary School, where their daughter Leah attends. Dr. Mike talked about what being a dentist is all about and why he enjoys it so much.
Although it would make a great story, Tina did not give Dr. Mike his black eye! Dr. Mike earned that on the racquetball court a few days ago!