Fatty liver disease: periodontitis, tooth decay or tooth loss may be symptoms
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the term for a range of conditions caused by an accumulation of fat in the liver. You can also get alcohol-related liver disease, which is liver damage caused by drinking too much alcohol. What are the oral symptoms to look out for?
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the term for a range of conditions caused by an accumulation of fat in the liver.
NAFLD shares some risk factors with periodontitis – a serious gum infection that can lead to tooth loss and tooth decay, more commonly known as tooth decay.
Researchers interested in this link have explored the possible association between NAFLD and several oral conditions in American adults.
Data were pooled from a cross-sectional, representative National Health and Nutrition Survey (NHANES) over the period 1988 to 1994.
Researchers found that people with untreated tooth decay were more likely to have NAFLD.
NAFLD was also associated with tooth loss, periodontitis.
In another study published in the National Library of Medicine of the National Institutes of Health in the United States, the interaction between periodontitis and liver disease was studied.
The study noted that a growing body of evidence indicates that periodontitis may participate in the progression of liver diseases, such as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma, as well as affect liver transplantation.
The study concluded that the available evidence suggests that periodontitis may be a risk factor for the development and progression of NAFLD.
Reduce your risk
Following a healthy lifestyle could help reduce the risk of developing the disease.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, taking prescribed medications, and limiting alcohol consumption could all help.
However, the good news is that once you develop NAFLD, you may still be able to reduce fat and inflammation in your liver, as the organ has “an incredible ability to repair itself,” says the American health portal.