Scientific Research on the Medial Impact of Poor Oral Health​




Scientific studies confirm the correlation between periodontitis and systemic diseases such as arteriosclerosis, diabetes, heart diseases, stroke, disease of the respiratory system, kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis, premature birth and low birth weight babies, erectile dysfunction and dementia. This literature review of applied articles identifies the benefits of regular oral healthcare and access to an online dentist for urgent issues.  


Goals of The TeleDentists Program


  1. Reduce the risk of oral disease
  2. Provide a virtual dentist 24/7 wherever/whenever a dentist is needed
  3. Provide quality patient care and accurate assessment, in real time, by a subject-matter expert. The right specialist enhances correct care – avoids risk
  4. Pro-active patient assistance identifying appropriate follow-up care and enabling that appointment
  5. Reduce the number of unnecessary ER visits


Additional goals for hospitals:


  1. Speed Emergency Room patient through-put which is good for the hospital and increases patient satisfaction. No more 4 hour waits for emergent oral issues.
  2. Free up ER doctors to concentrate on Level 2 & 3 patients by allowing The TeleDentists to diagnose Level 1 oral care issues
  3. Reduce opioid RX risk by having the right specialist address patient needs


Research Findings


Number of People Going to ER for Dental Problems on the Rise


  • A study from the Health Policy Institute shows dental care in the emergency room is growing faster than overall ER visits, making it hard to contain health costs as emergency rooms across the U.S. are seeing more patients with painful tooth problems.
  • In Wisconsin, non-traumatic tooth-related ER visits increased 20 percent over four years.
  • Source: Superior Wisconsin Telegram News Mar 24, 2015


Aetna study shows major medical and cost benefits for those with regular oral health care protocol


  • Study evaluated a Test group who received 10% more preventative dental care versus statistically matched control group who did not
  • Test group had 42% less basic and major dental treatments; 17% lower medical costs; 5% fewer hospital admits; 45% improvement in diabetes control over time;


Infections in the Mouth tied to Cardiovascular Risk


  • Elevation of Systemic Markers Related to Cardiovascular Disease in the Peripheral Blood of Periodontitis Patients
  • Periodontitis results in higher systemic levels of CRP, IL-6 and neutrophils. These elevated inflammatory factors may increase inflammatory activity in atherosclerotic lesions, potentially increasing the risk for cardiac of cerebrovascular events.                                                                   

Source: Journal of Periodontal 2000; 71:1528-1534.   


Chronic Periodontitis shows significant relationship with Acute Myocardial Infections


  • Conclusions: Our findings suggest that patients who at routine dental visits demonstrate evidence of bone loss around several teeth can predictably be identified as being at risk for future AMI. Such subjects should be referred for medical and periodontal examinations and treatments.                                                             

Source G. Rutger Persson, Ola Ohlsson, Thomas Pettersson, Stefan Renvert


Poor Oral Health Complicates Metabolic Control Among Type 2 Diabetics


  • Phase 1 of the service Evidence does show a direct correlation between periodontal health and glycemic control in type 2 diabetic patients. Furthermore, several studies have demonstrated the beneficial effect of periodontal treatment on metabolic control of type 2 diabetic patients.


Control of Periodontal Disease an Integral part of Diabetes Control


  • Effective control of periodontal infection in diabetic patients reduces the level of AGEs in the serum. The level of glycemic control seems to be the key factor. prevention and control of periodontal disease must be considered an integral part of diabetes control - Source: Debora C. Matthews, DDS, Dip Perio, MSc Journal of the Canadian Dental Association March 2002,
  • Oral infections increase the total number of leukocytes, the number of neutrophils and lymphocytes, and blood glucose concentrations in DM rats - Source: J Endod. 2014 Aug;40(8):1139-44. doi: 10.1016/j.joen.2014.01.034. Epub 2014 Apr 13.


Prevalence of Periodontal Pathogens impacts Metabolic Control of Type 1 Diabetes Patients


  • We conclude that T. forsythia and T. denticola are most frequently found in subgingival plaque samples of type 1 diabetic patients and these findings correlate with poorer metabolic control of diabetes.

Source:  Int’l Academy of Periodontal. 2013 Jan;15


  • Aetna Study shows improvement of HbA1c with good oral health


  1. Diabetes patients with good oral health had a 45% improvement in diabetes control over time.


  • Association Between Chronic Periodontitis and Vasculogenic Erectile Dysfunction


  1. Erectile dysfunction (ED) and chronic periodontitis (CP) share common risk factors.  CP among all vasculogenic patients with ED was highest among severe ED patients (81.8%), suggesting a strong correlation between CP and vasculogenic ED.
  • Source: Periodontal Control. 2011, Epub 2011 Apr 5.


Poor Oral Health can complicate kidney disease

Periodontal Disease: A Covert Source of Inflammation in Chronic Kidney Disease Patients


  • A chronic, low-grade inflammatory status is a usual phenomenon also found in patients with early stage (2 to 4) of CKD [62–65]. Although there are multiple causes for elevated CRP levels in ESRD population, many patients experience high serum CRP values without any visible signs of infection and/or inflammation. The causes of inflammation are not entirely understood, but lately, it has become evident that inflammation is one of the strongest predictors of poor clinical outcome in these patients [66].
  • So, we hypothesize that periodontitis, in its moderate and severe forms, might represent one of the sources of systemic inflammation, one of which is possible to manage through efficient initial periodontal therapy.                                                     

Source:  International Journal of Nephrology Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 515796, 6 pages Article


Strong Correlation between Periodontitis and Rheumatoid Arthritis


  • Emerging evidence suggests a strong relationship between the extent and severity of periodontal disease and RA. The results of this study provide further evidence of a significant association between periodontitis and rheumatoid arthritis. This association may reflect a common underlying dysregulation of the inflammatory response in these individuals.

Source:  Periodontal 2001; 72:779-787.


Periodontal Infection as a Possible Risk Factor for Pre-term Low Birth Weight


  • These data indicate that periodontal diseases represent a previously unrecognized and clinically significant risk factor for preterm low birth weight as a consequence of either PTL or preterm PROM (Premature rupture of membranes)

 Source: Journal of Periodontology October 1996, Vol. 67, No. 10s, Pages 1103-1113 , DOI 10.1902/jop.1996.67.10s.1103


Good Oral healthcare reduces the risk of pneumonia among post-operative cardiac surgery patients


  • Impact of improvement in preoperative oral health on nosocomial pneumonia in a group of cardiac surgery patients: a single arm prospective intervention study.
  • PP rates were reduced using a simple and efficient protocol of dental care that improved    oral hygiene in the preoperative period of cardiac surgery patients


Good Oral healthcare reduces the risk of pneumonia among postoperative Brain Surgery patients 


  • Presence of multiple periodontal diseases and pathogenic bacteria in the saliva are important pre-disposing factors of postoperative aspiration pneumonia in patients after brain surgery. The low penetration rate of cefazolin into the saliva indicates that its prophylactic administration may not be sufficient to prevent postoperative aspiration pneumonia. Our study suggests that dental examination may be warranted to identify patients at high level of risk of developing postoperative respiratory infections.



In Hospitals, Pneumonia Is a Lethal Enemy


  • Pneumonia is the No. 1 hospital-acquired infection in America and hospitals aren’t doing enough to fight it. The best weapon: a toothbrush. Study shows reduction in hospital-acquired infections with monitored, regular tooth brushing of patients.

Source:   Lucette Lagnado Feb. 17, 2018 WSJ


To learn more about how The TeleDentists can service your organization, contact us now.



The TeleDentists® Company and Management


The TeleDentists is a Limited Liability Company with offices in Kansas City, MO and Dallas, TX.   

The Founders, Drs. Maria Kunstadter and Michael Sigler are both nationally and internationally known dentists with a combined 65+ years of providing dental care.  Their entrepreneurial success includes building and selling three businesses over the past 10 years.


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