A Scoping Review to Map the Evidence on Reducing Periodontitis in Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients

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Abstract Background: Research has shown that patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are also likely to report complaints of periodontal disease (PDD). Cases of RA (RACs) who develop PDD have reported a significant reduction in quality of life (QoL). Therefore, dental care is crucial for RACs to prevent the development of PDD. Aim: The current study aimed to identify approaches to reducing PDD in RACs by reviewing recent international literature and identifying ways to help relieve PDD. Methods: Using phenomenology as the research strategy, the current study is a scoping review of the literature with the intention of synthesising and disseminating recent empirical evidence on the relationship between PDD and RA and how to improve the QoL of RACs by preventing the development of PDD. Findings: It was discovered that three main lifestyle factors predicted the relationship between PDD and RA, namely smoking, overweight, and dietary intake patterns. Therefore, alleviating these active factors, such as smoking cessation, weight reduction, and increasing the intake of Vitamins C and D, can help in reducing the odds of developing PDD among RACs. However, these strategies should be accompanied with optimal dental care practices, mainly the use of a mouthwash containing essential oils and curcumin (MEC), electric toothbrushes with elongated handles, and interdental cleaning and flossing aids. Concerning treatment, DMARDs can be used in combination with non-invasive procedures like scaling and root plaining (SRP). Conclusion: Optimal dental care in RACs is essential as it boosts their QoL and reduces the odds of developing PDD. Keywords: Rheumatoid arthritis, periodontal disease, dental care, relationship