Although more research needs to be done, some studies suggest that chronic severe gum disease (periodontitis) may be linked to a higher risk of strokes, heart disease, and clogged arteries.
Experts think that the bacteria that live in your mouth and cause the gum disease can lead to a chronic state of inflammation in the body, causing more plaque build-up in the blood vessels. This in turn may cause abnormally thick blood vessels near the heart (coronary arteries). These thickened coronary arteries, along with the fatty plaques that form on the artery walls, can lead to coronary artery disease.
Another possibility is that long-term gum disease may cause heart problems when bacteria from the mouth enter the bloodstream. Once in the bloodstream, the bacteria can attach to plaques in the blood vessels surrounding your heart. These plaques can then form blood clots that can reduce, or even stop, blood flow to your heart, causing a heart attack.