Gum disease could raise the risk of cancer, according to researchers. A study found that men with a history of gum disease had a 14 percent higher cancer risk overall. More specifically, gum disease increases lung cancer risk by 36 percent, kidney cancer by 49 percent, pancreatic cancer by 54 percent and white blood cell cancer by 30 percent, the study found. The link between gum disease and lung cancer vanishes in men with gum disease who’ve never smoked—but non-smoking men still had a 35 percent overall risk for other cancers.

A key to fighting gum disease: brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing and visiting your dentist every six months. For more on oral health, read RH’s “Flossing.