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Kidney Disease and How it is Linked to Your Oral Health

Kidney Health the National Kidney Foundation, Inc.

Kidney disease affects millions of people in the US, with many more at risk of developing the disease. Those at risk include people who have diabetes, high blood pressure, and family history of kidney disease. Studies are now showing poor eating habits, smoking, and obesity are also a cause of kidney disease.

What does this mean for you and how is it related to your oral health?

It is now known that people with kidney disease and those on dialysis are more likely to have periodontal disease and other oral health problems than the general population. Buildup of bacteria in the mouth can cause infection. Because people with kidney disease have weakened immune systems, they are more susceptible to infections. The inflammation caused by periodontal disease is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Regular visits to the dentist can cut risk of infection and periodontal disease.
Bone loss in the jaw can occur in those with kidney disease as well. Calcium imbalance contributes to loss of calcium from the bones resulting in weak bones. Weak bones can cause teeth to become mobile. The best way to help prevent bone loss is to make sure calcium and phosphorus levels stay within the goal range. High calcium foods include dairy, sardines, and dark leafy greens like spinach, and collard greens.

Prevention

The National Kidney Foundation is urging people to lower their risk of kidney disease by losing weight, changing their diet, and quitting smoking. To help with you diet change, we recommend you limit your salt intake, and red meat intake because it is high in saturated fat. Cut out sodas and other high-calorie drinks, and avoid processed foods. Look for ingredients such as Phosphorus, which in excess amounts is harmful to your kidneys. Lowering your sugar intake will not only help prevent cavities, but also lower your risk of diabetes, and future kidney disease.

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