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I would like to share a couple of articles I recently read  in the AGD Impact Magazine that is put out by the Academy of General Dentistry. It is surprising how your oral care and hygiene can effect the rest of your body and health.

Sugary Drinks May Impact Heart Health

Surgery drinks not only harm tooth enamel, but they also are associated with more than a 20 percent increased risk of heart attacks in men, according to a study published in the March 12, 2012 issue of Circulation. Researchers at Harvard University found that men who consume one 12-ounce, sugar-sweetened drink every day have a 20 percent increased risk of heart attack than those who do not drink these sugar-laden treats. Further, this risk increases to 42 and 69 percent with two and three sugary drinks per day, respectively. The study did not find an increased heart risk with artificially-sweetened drinks, but the researchers do advise patients that the healthiest drink choice is water

More Men Affected By Oral Cancer Virus

The human papillomavirus (HPV) affects almost 15 million Americans, which represents 6.9 percent of adults and teens in the United States, according to a January 2012 Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) study. This study — which used oral exfoliated cell samples from 5, 579 mean and women between the ages of 14 and 69 — found that men had a higher rate of HPV infection than women, at 10 and 4 percent, respectively. Several strains of this incurable virus are linked to some cancers, and those infected with HPV 16 strain are 14 times more likely to develop oral cancers than those without the HPV infection.


However, this cross-sectional study, from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2009-2010, indicated that despite the prevalence of HPV in the U.S. population, the occurrence of cancer as a result of the virus is very low. In addition, the study also indicated that most oral HPV infections are sexually transmitted.


The study also led researchers to believe that HPV may be spread by kissing, and that patients who identified themselves as “sexually experienced” were more likely to have HPV than those who identified as “sexually inexperienced”. The researchers found that is data is “consistent with transmission by other sexually-associated contact”.


The study’s lead author, Maura Gillison, MD, PhD, chair of cancer research at The Ohio State University, says, “This study of oral HPV infection is the critical first step toward developing potential oropharyngeal cancer prevention strategies. This is clearly important, because HPV-positive oropharyngeal cancer is poised to overtake cervical cancer as the leasing type of HPV-caused cancers in the U.S. ” The authors acknowledge that more studies are necessary in order to know whether or not recent HPV vaccines are effective in preventing oral HPV infections.


We hope that the information that we share on our blog is informative and useful to our patients. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us.