What is Cardiovascular Disease?

Cardiovascular disease is any type of problem or disease that affects the heart; this can range from high blood pressure to arrhythmias, to heart failure. Some patients may take medications for their heart condition; this does not mean that the condition is not present- it means that the condition is being treated. If you have any type of heart issues or are taking medication for a heart condition, it is very important that you let your Dentist and the dental team members know.

 

If the health issue is in my heart, why does my dentist need to know?

As with many diseases, although it is present in one area of the body, other parts of the body can be affected. With high blood pressure, certain types of dental anesthetic can elevate the blood pressure; Dentists can combat this by using a different anesthetic that will not have this effect.  Dentists at Distinctive Dentistry in Tacoma regularly use this different anesthetic to help provide patients with a comfortable and safe dental experience.

Additionally, some medications taken by patients with high blood pressure can cause changes within the oral cavity, including excessive gingival overgrowth or dry mouth. Both of these resulting conditions can contribute to cavities or bone loss if not managed properly.

 

I have heart disease, does this mean I can’t go to the dentist?

Absolutely not! Your dentist is highly trained to treat patients that have cardiovascular disease.  By working in tandem with your physician, your dentist can create a treatment plan tailored to your needs to provide a safe, comfortable dental experience. This may include anxiety reduction techniques, appointments at certain times of the day and/or the use of different anesthetics.