Patients who have experienced a heart attack or stroke are often elderly or middle-aged and frequently require dental care as well. Some medical professionals advise people to put off getting their teeth cleaned for at least six months following a heart attack. An evaluation of the necessity of delaying dental operations for individuals who have experienced a heart attack or stroke was done by researchers at the University of Minneapolis.
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For years, there has been a perception among cardiologists that dental treatments, especially invasive ones, can lead to bacteremia: the entry of oral bacteria into the bloodstream. They consider this process to be fatal for people who have had a heart attack or stroke. In this regard, at the initiative of the American Heart Association, a group of researchers from the University of Minneapolis conducted research aimed at evaluating the effect of dental treatment in patients who have previously suffered a heart attack or stroke.
As a result, the researchers found that dental treatment of any kind, including invasive procedures, had no association with the risk of repeated cardiovascular attacks throughout the study. They concluded that none of the study participants had an increased risk of recurrent heart attack or stroke.
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Opinion of experts
According to many current experts, invasive treatment, like many other types of dental treatment, is not associated with a risk of recurrent stroke or heart attack. The dangers and risks, in this case less than 1%, which means there is no special risk for patients undergoing dental treatment after serious cardiovascular disease. It has been proven in practice that even patients whose bodies have been exposed to bacteremia have not been exposed to the risk of coronary disease or stroke recurrence.
In addition, the harmful effects of untimely dental treatment on the cardiovascular system have been scientifically proven. For example, if you have a history of chronic periodontal disease, your risk of heart failure about doubles. It’s all about bacteria breeding in the periodontium – the tissues surrounding the tooth, quietly entering the bloodstream, causing inflammation in the blood vessels and contributing to blood clots, which eventually lead to serious heart problems. Of course, such processes do not happen overnight, but take time.
Thus, modern specialists strongly recommend that dental treatment should not be postponed for up to six months or more after a patient has had a stroke or heart attack. Especially if they need urgent dental care, because they are tormented by terrible toothache or noticed defects that need to be corrected urgently. After all, the risks to their health are minimal, and the benefits of timely oral hygiene, are disproportionately great.
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Modern experts have proven that invasive dental treatment is not associated with an increased risk of recurrent stroke or heart attack. However, the dangers of untimely dental treatment on the cardiovascular system have been scientifically proven. Therefore, while there is a minimal risk associated with dental treatment after serious cardiovascular disease, the benefits of timely oral hygiene are disproportionately great and should not be postponed.