Infections in the mouth are usually harmless. However, their pathogens can spread in the body and trigger secondary diseases. Good oral hygiene and dental care help to prevent this.
Gum and tooth root inflammation or inflammation in the oral cavity are common. Almost everyone can remember suffering from it at least once. They often heal on their own or after dental treatment. Nevertheless, attention should be paid to inflammation in the mouth, because if bacteria or messenger substances enter the bloodstream from inflamed gum pockets, for example, they can trigger serious diseases.
Immune cells transport the bacteria
As soon as an inflammation occurs in the mouth, the immune system reacts and defense mechanisms are activated. This increases the blood supply to the affected areas so that more immune cells reach the inflamed area to render the pathogens harmless. At the same time, however, these immune cells bring more bacteria or messenger substances from the mouth into the bloodstream, through which they spread rapidly throughout the body.
People without pre-existing conditions can usually cope with this spread without any problems. However, the pathogens can cause serious illness in people with a weakened heart. “Studies indicate that endocarditis (inflammation of the inside lining of the heart chambers and heart valves) and other cardiovascular diseases could be triggered by specific oral bacteria spread in this way. The reduction in vascular function caused by these bacteria has been proven,” says Isabella Sudano, Head Physician at the Clinic for Cardiology and specialist in cardiovascular risk factors.