Dental hygiene wards off stroke risk

Dental-care-webRegular visits to the dentist will not only give you healthy teeth but also cut your risk of stroke, new research has claimed.
Taiwanese researchers found that getting teeth “deep cleaned” can dramatically reduce the chances of developing atrial fibrillation – an irregular heartbeat – which is one of the major stroke risk factors.
Even dental scaling done just once a year seemed to have a powerful protective effect, the Daily Express reported. The team of researchers, from the Taipei Veterans General Hospital in Taiwan, recruited nearly 29,000 volunteers over 60 with no history of heart trouble and questioned them about how often they went to the dentist for dental scaling, where the build-up of plaque and tartar is removed.
They then tracked them for nearly five years to see which ones went on to develop atrial fibrillation.
The results, published in the International Journal of Cardiology, showed that patients who saw their dentist for a scale and polish at least once a year were a third less likely to develop an abnormal heartbeat. And the more frequently they had it done, the bigger the benefits, the research found.
It is believed that bacteria increase the rate at which arteries get blocked. -PTI

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