In a recent study conducted by the University of Central Lanchasire in the UK, researchers found that people who had poor hygiene or gum disease were at a higher risk for developing Alzheimer s disease, in comparison to those who had healthy teeth. This was evident in the presence of bacterium called Porphyromonas gingivalis, which is commonly connected with periodontal disease, that appeared in brains of those with dementia.
Generally the Porphyromonas gingivalis is found in oral cavities, but it can spread throughout the body through various daily activities, such as brushing your teeth or chewing, and is even more likely to enter the body through aggressive dental treatment. These various things can lead to the bacteria entering the brain. When that happens, researchers found that it can trigger an immune system response, which subsequently can cause a release of too many chemicals that can kill neurons in the brain.
This study added to previous studies that linked Alzheimer's disease and poor general health. Studies done by places such as New York University and University of New Mexico previously found that gum disease and other viruses and diseases, such as HSV-1 can increase cognitive dysfunction risk, and thus Alzheimer's disease. To read the full article click here.
The moral of the story? Have your teeth professionally cleaned and checked every 6 months and keep up good home care, flossing every day and brushing your teeth at least twice a day. By having a healthy mouth you will have lower risk of other health issues as well.