Advertisement

Healthy Smile, Less Cancer?

Healthy Smile, Less Cancer?

You know flossing is a great way to fend off gum disease. But cancer?

Turns out that there might be a connection. A study of lifestyle habits showed that people with healthy gums also enjoyed a lower risk of developing any type of cancer.

Telling Teeth
In the study, researchers used questionnaires to track the health histories and lifestyle habits of close to 50,000 men for nearly 18 years. Compared with men who had no track record of gum problems, men with a history of gum disease were 14 percent more likely to develop cancer -- any kind, although the link was especially strong for lung and pancreatic cancer.

The Gateway to Good Health
How gum problems might lead to cancer isn't totally clear, but other research indicates that people with gum disease usually have higher blood levels of certain inflammatory markers that are also associated with cancer and other health problems. Yep, healthy teeth may mean more than just a pretty smile. Here are a few more ways to keep your whites pearly:

Medically reviewed in August 2019.

Are Dental X-Rays a Health Risk?
Are Dental X-Rays a Health Risk?
If you're always looking for an excuse to cancel your dentist appointment for fear of another dental filling, radiation from dental x-rays might be an...
Read More
What is dental health?
American Dental AssociationAmerican Dental Association
Dental health is another way of saying oral health or the health of your mouth. The mouth is a windo...
More Answers
8 Things Your Breath Reveals About Your Health
8 Things Your Breath Reveals About Your Health8 Things Your Breath Reveals About Your Health8 Things Your Breath Reveals About Your Health8 Things Your Breath Reveals About Your Health
Stop throwing mints at the problem—find out what's causing your bad breath. 
Start Slideshow
Gobble Yogurt for Healthy Gums
Gobble Yogurt for Healthy Gums