A new study may have found a link between gum disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s is a progressive neurological disease that causes shrinkage of the brain. The disease is severe and can result in anxiety, memory loss and a range of debilitating symptoms including loss of language, and communication skills. In some cases, symptoms can develop in people aged as young as their thirties.
Is there a link between oral health and Alzheimer’s?
A new study may have found a link between Alzheimer’s and oral health. The missing link could be Porphyromonas gingivalis. Many of us are familiar with the term Gingivitis, a gum disease your dentist will often reference when encouraging you to floss. This link could show that the bacteria from Gingivitis (named ‘Porphyromonas gingivalis) could be linked to the same inflammation found in the brain of Alzheimer’s patients.
What else can gum disease cause?
As well as the new link to Alzheimer’s, there are established studies that already reference a link between gum disease to some cancers, diabetes and birth complications. It is well established that there is a link from oral health to overall health.
How can you keep your teeth and gums healthy?
We encourage patients to visit their dentist every six months and brush, and floss, twice per day. Dr Antony Benedetto, Erina Dentist, says “It’s never too late to take charge of your oral health. If you haven’t been to the dentist in years, take the first step and book in.”
Dr Antony acknowledges people often avoid the dentist until they have a problem or a toothache, but “this study on Alzheimer’s again highlights the link between oral health and general health and well-being. If your gums are bleeding when you brush, then I suggest you book in.”