London: Here`s another reason to brush
your teeth at least twice everyday -- poor dental hygiene can
significantly raise your risk of developing heart disease,
A new study, published in the British Medical Journal,
found that those who don`t brush their teeth regularly are 70
percent more likely to develop heart disease than those who`re
conscientious about cleaning their teeth morning and night.
"Our results confirmed and further strengthened
the suggested association between oral hygiene and the risk of
(heart) disease," Professor Richard Watt of University College
London, who led the study, said.
The study looked at data on more than 11,000 adults.
All the subjects were asked about their lifestyle behaviours,
including how often they brushed their teeth.
Nurses also took information on medical history
and family history of heart disease as well as blood pressure
levels and blood samples. The subjects were then followed for
an average of eight years.
Of those involved, just over six out of 10 visited
their dentist every six months while 71 per cent said they
brushed their teeth twice a day. During the following eight
years, there were 555 examples of serious heart problems
including heart attacks. Of these, 170 were fatal.