In honor of National Dental Hygiene Month, let’s talk about your heart! Gum inflammation has been shown in several studies to raise your risk of heart disease and stroke. This is thought to be because gum disease increases the inflammation throughout your body, which is known to lead to cardiovascular disease. Inflammation is a major risk factor for heart disease. Your dentist or hygienist should ask you about your heart health and family history of heart disease and conversely, cardiologists should examine your oral health. A problem in one area may signal trouble in the other. Keep your heart and your smile healthy!