ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Climate Change Could Sting Allergy, Asthma Sufferers
Molecule in Skin May Link Eczema and Asthma
Obesity May Raise Kids' Allergy Risk
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Indian Spice May Thwart Liver Damage
Wristbands May Lessen Nausea After Radiation
Memory Loss Help from Brain Supplement Prevagen
ANIMAL CARE
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
Safe Toys for Dogs
BONES & JOINTS
Body Fat, Muscle Distribution Linked to RA Disability
Hip Replacement Boosts Mobility at Any Age
B Cells Can Act Alone in Autoimmune Diseases
CANCER
Vitamin D May Lower Colon Cancer Risk
Adding Garlic Might Cut Cancer Risk
Omega-3 May Safely Treat Precancerous Bowel Polyps
CAREGIVING
Critically Ill Patients Lack Vitamin D
Late-Life Fatherhood May Lower Child's Intelligence
Study Casts Doubt on Influential Hospital Safety Survey
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Smog Tougher on the Obese
Obesity Linked to Heart Failure Risk
Migraines in Pregnancy Boost Vascular Risks
COSMETIC
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
The Acne Drug Accutane More Than Doubles Depression Risk
New Genetic Links to Baldness Discovered
DENTAL, ORAL
Most Insured Adults Worry About Health Care Costs: Poll
Sports Drinks May Be Tough on Teeth
Gum Disease Might Boost Cancer Risk
DIABETES
Americans Consuming More Sugary Beverages
Brown Rice Bests White for Diabetes Prevention
Fructose-Sweetened Drinks Up Metabolic Syndrome Risk
DIET, NUTRITION
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
The Raw Food Diet
Licorice May Block Absorption of Organ Transplant Drug
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Pollution Particles Impair Blood Vessel Function
Climate Change Linked to Longer Pollen Seasons
1976 Italian Dioxin Release Damaged Babies' Thyroids
EYE CARE, VISION
'Blind' Man Navigates Obstacle Course Without Error
Sports Eye Injuries Leading Cause of Blindness in Youths
Certain Diabetes Drugs May Pose Eye Risk
FITNESS
Yoga Can Ease Lower Back Pain
Go To Work But Skip The Car
Moderate Aerobic Exercise Lowers Diabetics' Liver Fat
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Intestinal Bacteria Trigger Immune Response
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
Bowel Prep Harder on Women Than Men
GENERAL HEALTH
Eating Lots Of Vegetables, Olive Oil May Extend Life
Eating Well And Keeping Active As You Grow Old Will Help You Stay Sharp
Research Shows Genetic Activity of Antioxidants
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Airport Full Body Scanners Pose No Health Threat: Experts
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Omega-6 Fatty Acids Can Be Good for You
Low Vitamin D Levels Linked to Heart Disease
More Steps a Day Lead to Better Health
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
Surgical Masks Could Prevent Flu, Maybe
Chinese 'Devil Dung' Plant Could Be a Swine Flu Fighter
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Traffic Seems to Make Kids' Asthma Worse
Decline of Underweight Children in U.S. Continue to Fall
Babies Who Eat Fish Lower Eczema Risk
MEN'S HEALTH
Countdown to Hair Loss
Eating Fast Until Full Triples Overweight Risk
Sunlight May Help Protect Men From Kidney Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Worries About Weight Are Tied to Teen Suicide Tries
Psychotherapy Can Boost Happiness More Than Money
Music Soothes Anxiety as Well as Massage Does
PAIN
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Before Conceiving, Take Folic Acid for One Full Year
Calcium Supplements Cut Blood Lead Levels During Pregnancy
Breast-Feeding Benefits Moms and Babies
SENIORS
A Little Alcohol May Stave Off Alzheimer's
More Whole Grains May Mean Less Fat
Daily dose of beet juice promotes brain health in older adults
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Supplements Might Reduce Breast Cancer Risk
Exercise During Pregnancy Keeps Newborn Size Normal
Being Active an Hour a Day Puts Brakes on Weight Gain
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Toothbrushing May Stave Off Heart Woes

Here's another reason to brush your teeth regularly: People who don't perform this essential of oral hygiene seem to have a greater risk of heart disease compared to their more diligent peers.

"We were surprised to find a relationship between toothbrushing frequency and both cardiovascular disease and inflammatory markers in the blood," said Richard Watt, co-author of a study published this week in the BMJ.

"We have not established a causal relationship, however. More research is needed to test if improving patients' oral hygiene to reduce their gum inflammation has an effect on cardiovascular disease risk," added Watt, who is with the department of epidemiology and public health at University College London.

The findings do make sense, however, in light of previous studies that have found a relationship between gum disease and heart disease. Periodontal disease has been associated with a 19 percent increase in the risk of heart disease. That number leaps to 44 percent in people under the age of 65, according to the study.

The most likely culprit is the inflammation associated with gum disease, which can go system-wide and contribute to plaque build-up in the arteries.

The study authors surveyed almost 12,000 people living in Scotland who admitted to how often they brushed their teeth.

Over an average eight years of follow-up, people who "rarely or never brushed" their teeth had a 70 percent increased risk of a heart attack, stroke or other event, compared to those who set to the task twice a day.

The rarely/never brushers also had higher levels of C reactive protein, a marker of inflammation.

Overall, though, participants practiced good oral hygiene with almost two-thirds saying they went to the dentist every six months and almost three-quarters reporting brushing their teeth twice daily.

"We talk often about lifestyle behaviors such as smoking, exercise and diet, and one of the things we can't forget about when it comes to self-maintenance is oral hygiene," said Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, a preventive cardiologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City and spokeswoman for the American Heart Association. "It's one new thing. Don't smoke, eat right and brush your teeth."

"It's nice to have one more reason to brush your teeth," added Dr. Harmony R. Reynolds, associate director of the Cardiovascular Clinical Research Center at NYU Langone Medical Center and assistant professor of medicine at New York University School of Medicine. "Over time, it reduces inflammation."

SOURCES: Richard Watt, Ph.D., department of epidemiology and public health, University College London; Suzanne Steinbaum, D.O., preventive cardiologist, Lenox Hill Hospital, New York City, and spokeswoman, American Heart Association; Harmony R. Reynolds, M.D., associate director, Cardiovascular Clinical Research Center, NYU Langone Medical Center, and assistant professor of medicine, New York University School of Medicine, New York City; May 28, 2010, BMJ Published on: May 28, 2010