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An Australian study finds that gum disease of the teeth, what is called periodontitis, can take a woman longer to get pregnant.

Dr. Roger Hart, a professor of reproductive medicine (School of Women's and Infants' Health) at the University of Western Australia (Crawley) led the study on gum disease and fertility/pregnancy.

The Hart group studied 3,416 women in Western Australia. Most of them were of Asian heritage and young in age.

The study found that, on average, women with gum disease took over 7 months to get pregnant, whereas women with healthy gums took only 5 months.

The results of the study were announced at the annual meeting of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE), held in Stockholm, Sweden on July 3-6, 2011.

Dr. Hart and his colleagues think that the reason for the difference in pregnancy times is inflammation caused by bacteria in the mouth. Somehow the bacteria have an adverse effect on tissues involved in the reproductive system.

According to the AFP article 'Gum disease delays pregnancy, fertility conference hears', Dr. Hart stated that a healthy lifestyle is conducive to getting pregnant.

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William Atkins

William Atkins completed educational degrees in science (bachelor’s in physics and mathematics) from Illinois State University (Normal, United States) and business (master’s in entrepreneurship and bachelor’s in industrial relations) from Western Illinois University

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