Family Dentists Say Brushing Your Teeth Could Make Your Brain Healthier

New study shows connection between oral hygiene and Alzheimer’s.

Sound Body, Sound Mind

Alzheimer’s is just one of many diseases that continues to lack a definitive cure. This devastating illness generally manifests later in life and can include symptoms such as confusion and memory loss.

While there are still many unknown factors that contribute to the likelihood and cause of this disease, a new study has shown that taking care of your teeth could reduce your chance of developing symptoms later in life. Researchers from the Central University of Lancashire in the UK have found that poor oral hygiene and gum disease could put people at greater risk for developing dementia.

The link is in the presence of gingival bacteria that put the brain at risk. Researchers found that these bacteria were produced from oral cavities and entered the bloodstream through chewing or eating. Gum disease has previously been linked to a deterioration of cognitive function.

To avoid cavities, your family dentist recommends regular brushing and flossing. Flossing is especially important because it removes particles from the small spaces in between teeth where food often gets stuck and can build plaque deposits. In addition to these oral hygiene efforts, it’s a good idea to take preventative action. Don’t expose your teeth to an abundance of sugars in the first place. Sugars contribute to the formation of plaque on your teeth and weaken the enamel.

Decisions in your diet can also contribute to healthier teeth. Incorporating nutritional supplements like calcium and phosphorus strengthen your teeth and prevent decay. Gum disease is a result of oral neglect. Although it is a problematic condition, it can be easily prevented and corrected with adjustments in cleaning routines. Regular visits for intensive cleanings from your dentist are also highly recommended, especially if you have evidence of these conditions such as tooth sensitivity, pain, and tender or bleeding gums.

Gum disease and cavities may be linked to cognitive deterioration later in life, but they don’t have to be a contributing factor in your health if you take action. Talk to your dentist about the best procedures available today and develop a functional oral hygiene plan that works for you.

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