How Losing Weight Can Improve Gum Health
Weight loss has been linked to many positive health outcomes, and new research has found that it even benefits gum health. Researchers are not yet sure how this connection works, but it may involve inflammation. Here is a look at this study and what the researchers concluded.
Gum Health Before and After Weight Loss
Researchers at Case Western Reserve School of Dental Medicine, led by Nabil Bissasa, studied two groups of obese patients. One group had an average BMI of 39, and the other group had an average BMI of 35. Half of the first group had received gastric bypass surgery, and both groups were receiving periodontal treatments. The periodontal care improved gum health in all patients, but the patients who had received gastric bypass surgery had better gum health according to several tests.
Conclusions and Theories
The researchers pointed out that inflammation can cause health problems throughout the body, including in the mouth. In cases of gum disease, inflammation is tied to bone damage, tooth loss, and fissures in the gums. One way that weight loss may improve gum disease is by reducing insulin resistance. Another possibility is that lower levels of leptin, a hormone reduced by gastric bypass, improve gum disease.
Although more research will be valuable to investigate the results of this study, the value of weight loss for gum disease appears clear. In addition to using other preventive dental strategies, such as daily brushing, flossing, and healthy eating, dental patients may support their gum health by losing weight. A consultation with our dentist can be scheduled to discuss this study further and learn about more ways to prevent gum disease.
Back to Blog