Can Periodontitis Be Deadly?

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Last December, after a brief stay in a Chicago hospital, Scott died. He was 41 years old. The doctors identified the cause of his death as a bacterial infection of the heart which they believed stemmed from untreated periodontal disease. The same bacteria found in his heart was found in the inflamed tissue of his gums. Scott had some lifestyle, and possibly some congenital, issues that weakened his heart, but doctors believe his early death was totally avoidable. Although Scott was not his patient, we discussed this sad case with Dr. Taylor.

can periodontitis be deadly in Tucson AZ area

Periodontitis is Alarmingly Prevalent in America

Dr. Taylor explained that untreated periodontal disease is alarmingly prevalent in America. Many people are at risk, but have zero awareness how serious, even deadly, periodontitis can be. In fact, Dr. Taylor shared that 50% of Americans over the age of 30 suffer from varying levels of periodontal disease, 10% of those have severe periodontitis. These numbers are staggering!

Don’t Miss the Warning Signs

Because periodontal disease can be slow to develop, for many people it’s out of sight, out of mind.  Symptoms that indicate there is a problem, like gums that bleed while brushing or flossing, are often overlooked or just ignored as normal. There is never a case where bleeding gums is normal or okay. It is always literally a red flag something is wrong. Be sure you make regular visits to your dentist every six months for routine cleaning and dental checks.

Stopping Progression of the Disease

In cases of periodontitis , the only way to stop the progression of the disease is regular deep cleanings done by a dental professional. Once pockets have formed under the gumline and there has been bone loss, even excellent home oral hygiene must be coupled with professional deep cleanings. There is simply no physical way to reach and clean the areas prone to further bacterial growth without special tools and procedures provided by your dentist. Although the damage done cannot be reversed, further damage can definitely be stopped and the bacterial growth can be held in check.

A Definite Correlation Between Periodontitis and Heart Issues


Statistically, officials are not ready to confirm that there is a direct link between periodontitis and heart disease, but they definitely notice a strong correlation. Dr. Taylor explains that periodontal disease is a bacterial infection that can can affect the whole body, but the correlation between periodontitis and heart disease, strokes and other vascular issues are the strongest.

Could You Have Periodontitis?

Even if you do not have pain and have good home dental hygiene, you could have periodontitis. If your gums are bleeding or are tender, it is definitely time to see a dentist. Again, although damage cannot be reversed, periodontal disease can be halted. If you suspect you have periodontal disease, do not put it off, make an appointment with  Dr. Taylor or Dr. Martin today!

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Martin Taylor Dentistry

Dr. Jeff Martin and Dr. William Taylor

Martin-Taylor Dentistry is a partnership between Dr. Jeff Martin and Dr. William Taylor. Highly skilled and experienced, they provide emergency, preventative, restorative, cosmetic, children’s, and implant dentistry services.

Dr. Martin is an alumnus of the University of Arizona and Baylor College of Dentistry. He established his practice in 1978. Dr. Martin has completed on 1,500 hours of continuing education in dentistry. Dr. Taylor studied at the University of Arizona and the University of Southern California. He is experienced in general, cosmetic, and implant dentistry. Dr Taylor has also completed many hours of continuing education.
Both are licensed and skilled in sedation dentistry, so you can be as comfortable as possible.

Together with their excellent team, Martin-Taylor Dentistry will take great care of you.

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Dr. Taylor, Dr. Martin, and their entire staff are the very best. The front desk staff, the dental assistants, and dental hygienists are excellent. I’ve been to many dentists over the years, and they are the most skilled and professional group of people that I have encountered. You can be confident you will be fully informed about what is recommended for a treatment plan and what it will cost. I’ve had the gamut of dental procedures — crowns, implants, root canals, and more routine care. It’s been made as pleasant and comfortable as possible by their skill, as well as their kindness and understanding. I wholeheartedly recommend Martin and Taylor Dentistry.

Alice L.

Alice L. 4 months ago

I have been a patient of Dr. Taylor’s for most of my adult hood. I have had everything done from a filling to multiple dental implants. All of my procedures have been straightforward with zero complications and as little discomfort as possible. Even after my implants I had minimal pain! Before I saw Dr. Taylor I was terrified of dentists, but he put me at ease with his expertise. The hygienists are kind, thorough but gentle, and knowledgeable. The office staff is very friendly and helpful. The office itself is modern and impeccably clean. I highly recommend Martin Tayler dentistry and won’t trust my teeth to any other dentists.

Rosemary B.

Rosemary B. 3 months ago

Welcome the newest member of our team at Martin Taylor Dentistry, Dr. Melvin Abraham!