Ankara: Inflamed gums, caused by severe periodontal disease, tripled chances of erectile dysfunction (ED) among men in their 30s, according to a Turkish study.
Turkish researchers who compared 80 men aged 30 to 40 years with ED with another group of 82 without ED, found that 53 percent of the men in the first group had inflamed gums, compared with only 23 percent in the second group.
When the results were rationalised, the men with severe periodontal disease were found to be 3.29 times more likely to suffer from erection problems than men with healthy gums. Periodontal disease attacks the gum and bone and around the teeth.
"Erectile dysfunction is a major public health problem that affects the quality of life of some 150 million men, and their partners, worldwide," says Faith Oguz from Inonu University in Malatya, Turkey, who led the study.
"Physical factors cause nearly two-thirds of cases, mainly because of problems with the blood vessels, with psychological issues like emotional stress and depression accounting for the remainder, according to a Malatya statement.
"Chronic periodontitis (CP) is a group of infectious diseases caused predominantly by bacteria that most commonly occur with inflammation of the gums," said Oguz.
"Many studies have reported that CP may induce systemic vascular diseases, such as coronary heart disease, which have been linked with erection problems," Oguz added.
The average age of the men in both groups was just under 36 and there were no significant differences when it came to body mass index, household income and education.
Their sexual function was assessed using the International Index of Erectile Function and their gum health using the plaque index, bleeding on probing, probing depth and clinical attachment level.