The American Association for Cancer Research reported in a news release on Aug 21, 2013, Poor Oral Health Linked to Cancer-causing Oral HPV Infection. Although in most cases HPV goes away by itself before it causes any health problems, HPV can cause very serious health problems, including genital warts and certain cancers.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that genital human papillomavirus, which is also called HPV, is the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI). There are greater than 40 types of HPV that can infect the genital areas of males and females, which can can also infect the mouth and throat.
Poor oral health, including gum disease and dental problems, has been found to be associated with oral human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. According to a study published in Cancer Prevention Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, HPV causes about 40 percent to 80 percent of oropharyngeal cancers. Thanh Cong Bui, Dr.P.H., a researcher, has said, “Poor oral health is a new independent risk factor for oral HPV infection and, to our knowledge, this is the first study to examine this association.”
By maintaining good oral hygiene and good oral health, you can prevent HPV infection and subsequent HPV-related cancers. In the study those who reported poor oral health had a 56 percent higher prevalence of oral HPV infection. Those who had gum disease and dental problems had a 51 percent and 28 percent higher prevalence of oral HPV infection, respectively. The likelihood of oral HPV infection was found to be increased by being male, smoking cigarettes, using marijuana, and with oral sex habits.