By Dr. Mallika Marshall

BOSTON (CBS) – More evidence that regularly brushing your teeth won’t just freshen your breath, but it may also help protect your heart, according to a study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.

Researchers in Korea looked at more than 150,000 adults and found that tooth brushing three or more times a day was associated with a 10-percent lower risk of atrial fibrillation, a common heart rhythm disorder, and a 12-percent lower risk of heart failure over 10 years.

One theory is that frequent brushing reduces bacteria living between the teeth and gums. That prevents it from entering the bloodstream where it can lead to inflammation and promote heart disease.

And while it’s too early to recommend tooth brushing to prevent heart disease, poor oral hygiene has been linked to a number of health problems.

Dr. Mallika Marshall

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