Recent studies suggest possible links between periodontal infections and heart disease. Researchers have reported that the most common strain of bacteria found in plaque can cause blood clots that induce heart attacks when they escape into the bloodstream.
To explain the relationship between the heart and periodontal infections, some experts hypothesize that bacteria present in infected gums can come loose and move throughout the body.
It is possible that once bacteria reach the arteries, they can irritate in the same way they do the gum tissue, causing arterial plaque to buildup in the arteries. This accumulation of bacteria can cause arteries to harden and restrict blood-flow and potentially result in a heart attack or stroke.