Study shows a link may exist between poor oral hygiene and dementia

Study shows a link may exist between poor oral hygiene and dementia

If you’re like most adults, you’ve heard since you were a kid that oral hygiene is important. The message probably started with your parent and was reinforced Oral Hygiene | My Scottsdale Dentistby school teachers and dentists like Dr. Poulos at My Scottsdale Dentist.

Now as an adult you likely realize that oral hygiene is a critical component of healthy teeth and gums, fewer cavities, and overall mouth health. A study has shown, however, that there may be reasons you didn’t know about as a kid to make regular visits to your dentist. This study shows that there is a strong correlation between people with poor oral hygiene and dementia. It might be time to schedule an appointment with My Scottsdale Dentist to review your dental hygiene.

Correlation doesn’t show causation, but in this case there’s more than just a simple coincidence of effect. You might guess that someone with dementia is likely to not take very good care of their teeth. That’s true and previous studies have shown that very fact. This study, however, has located a specific gum-disease-causing bacteria in the brain of some patients. The name of the bacteria is called Porphyromonas gingivalis and of the ten people with dementia assessed in this study, four of them had this bacteria in their brain as well. Other studies have already found correlations between inflammation in periodontal disease caused by Porphyromonas gingivalis and conditions like Alzheimer’s.

According to The University of Central Lancashire, Sim Singhrao, a senior research fellow for this project, made the following statement:

“We are working on the theory that when the brain is repeatedly exposed to bacteria and/or debris from our gums, subsequent immune responses may lead to nerve cell death and possibly memory loss.”

From WebMD, St John Crean, dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry made the following comment:

“[…] it remains to be proven whether poor dental hygiene can lead to dementia in healthy people. It is also likely that these bacteria could make the existing disease condition worse.”

Ten people is not a large number, but forty percent is, so before any further conclusions can be drawn, this study will need to be repeated with a larger sample size. Given that infections in the mouth can pass to the brain, as has been seen with abscessed root canals, it’s not difficult to imagine that an insult to the gums or teeth can provide a passageway for a blood-borne pathogen to mobilize from the mouth, a few inches away to the brain.

Whether or not Alzheimer’s or other dementia-related neurological disorders are caused or worsened by bacteria, the correlation and consistent finding of periodontal bacteria in the brain makes the point, at least for us, that regular visits to the dentist do more than improve dental health they also seem to statistically improve mental health. For more information about the ways regular dental care can improve your overall health, please contact My Scottsdale Dentist and make an appointment today.

Why Good Oral Hygiene is Important in Preventing Disease

Why Good Oral Hygiene is Important in Preventing Disease

We all know how important good oral hygiene is for healthy teeth and a winning smile. What many people may not be aware of, though, is how important Oral Hygiene | My Scottsdale Dentistoral hygiene is to our overall health. My Scottsdale Dentist understands just how important good oral hygiene is to our patients over all health.

Daily brushing and flossing not only helps keep your teeth clean and breath fresh, it also helps to control bacteria on teeth. When bacteria build up, the gums are more likely to become infected. When gums are infected, they become inflamed as a result of the immune system’s efforts to combat the infection.

 

Periodontitis

Chemicals produced by inflamed gums damage the gums and the bone structure that holds the teeth. Periodontitis is the disease that results from inflamed gums and can cause health problems throughout the body. A 2011 Centers for Disease Control (CDC) report stated that people with periodontal disease are 40% more likely to have chronic health conditions than those with healthy gums.

 

Oral Hygiene and Other Health Conditions

In recent years, researchers have been studying the relationship between oral hygiene and other conditions to better understand the connection. An article in WebMD listed several health conditions that are more likely to affect people who have periodontitis:

 

Diabetes Inflammation impairs the body’s ability to use insulin properly for controlling blood sugar. This results in a kind off negative feedback loop, where high blood sugar helps to feed the infections and make the inflammation even worse.

 

Heart Disease Heart disease patients are more likely to have periodontitis than people without heart disease by a ratio of 91% to 66%. The mechanisms for this connection are not yet fully understood. One theory is that inflammation in the mouth causes blood vessels elsewhere to become inflamed. This inflammation restricts blood flow in the body, causing the heart to work harder, which increases blood pressure.

 

Cancer Studies have reported a “surprising” connection between gum disease and the risk for various cancers.

Gerald P. Curatola, D.D.S. wrote in Dr. OZ Magazine: “…gum disease has been identified as the body’s most abundant source of chronic low-grade inflammation which is described as smoldering fire in your body where the alarm bell is not answered. This causes a decrease in the body’s immune response, and eventually, irreversible damage to the immune system, which is being identified as a likely factor for the increased cancer risk.”

 

Pregnancy Hormonal changes women experience during pregnancy can increase their risk for periodontitis. Development of a fetus in the womb may be interfered with by infection and inflammation in other parts of the body. Many factors can contribute to low birth weight and premature birth. Researchers are still studying this connection.

As research continues into the importance of oral hygiene to overall health, My Scottsdale Dentist will continue to keep you informed of the best ways to protect your dental health. Contact us to schedule your next appointment.

Invisalign in Scottsdale: Long Term Benefits of Better Health

Invisalign in Scottsdale: Long Term Benefits of Better Health

Invisalign in Scottsdale mау bе оnе оf thе best options аvаіlаblе fоr you and уоur teen. Braces аrе nо fun, but thеіr ultimate benefit fаr outweighs nоt gеttіng invisalign in scottsdale | My Scottsdale Dentistthеm. Тhоsе whо nееd thеm оftеn will experience changes tо thеіr face аnd оvеrаll profile bу hаvіng thеsе devices рut іntо place. Тhеу work tо adjust thе location аnd alignment оf thе teeth. The dentists at My Scottsdale Dentist are experts in Invisalign treatments.

The Benefits Yоu’ll See: Invisalign in Scottsdale іs а unique type оf product. Rаthеr thаn usе metal оr ceramics, іt usеs а unique material thаt allows іt tо fit оvеr thе teeth іn а virtually invisible fashion. Іn mаnу cases, nо оnе will knоw іt іs thеrе unlеss уоu tеll thеm іt іs. Тhіs product іs а simple аnd effective method fоr improving уоur smile аs а teen wіthоut obtrusive wires. Тhіs method will straighten thе teeth wіthоut аnу risk оf оthеrs knowing іt іs happening.

Long Term Health Benefits: Although Invisalign’s primary job іs tо straighten teeth, achieving proper alignment аlsо presents long-term benefits оf improved gum health. Маnу signs оf periodontal disease appear іn thе gums whеn teeth aren’t properly aligned. Gums саn gеt red аnd swollen whеn іt іs difficult tо gеt floss оr gеt а toothbrush bеtwееn crowded аnd rotated teeth. Іn оthеr cases, gaps іn teeth саn pack food аnd irritate gums untіl а patient саn clean thе area.

When teeth аrе іn proper alignment аnd thе contact bеtwееn teeth іs appropriate fоr floss tо gеt thrоugh уеt tight еnоugh nоt tо pack debris, thаt аlоnе саn help discourage periodontal disease from setting in.

During Invisalign treatment, oral hygiene іs easier thаn wіth traditional braces bесаusе thе Invisalign aligners саn bе removed tо brush аnd floss daily. Professional cleanings аlsо аrе easier bесаusе thеrе аrе nо metal brackets оr bands covering thе teeth аnd preventing а dental hygienist frоm dоіng а proper cleaning.

To learn how you – or your teen – can get Invisalign in Scottsdale, make sure to contact us.

Why Good Oral Hygiene is Important in Preventing Disease

Why Good Oral Hygiene is Important in Preventing Disease

We all know how important good oral hygiene is for healthy teeth and a winning smile. What many people may not be aware of, though, is how importantOral Hygiene | My Scottsdale Dentist oral hygiene is to our overall health. My Scottsdale Dentist understands just how important good oral hygiene is to our patients over all health.

Daily brushing and flossing not only helps keep your teeth clean and breath fresh, it also helps to control bacteria on teeth. When bacteria build up, the gums are more likely to become infected. When gums are infected, they become inflamed as a result of the immune system’s efforts to combat the infection.

Periodontitis

Chemicals produced by inflamed gums damage the gums and the bone structure that holds the teeth. Periodontitis is the disease that results from inflamed gums and can cause health problems throughout the body. A 2011 Centers for Disease Control (CDC) report stated that people with periodontal disease are 40% more likely to have chronic health conditions than those with healthy gums.

Oral Hygiene and Other Health Conditions

In recent years, researchers have been studying the relationship between oral hygiene and other conditions to better understand the connection. An article in WebMD listed several health conditions that are more likely to affect people who have periodontitis:

Diabetes Inflammation impairs the body’s ability to use insulin properly for controlling blood sugar. This results in a kind off negative feedback loop, where high blood sugar helps to feed the infections and make the inflammation even worse.

Heart Disease Heart disease patients are more likely to have periodontitis than people without heart disease by a ratio of 91% to 66%. The mechanisms for this connection are not yet fully understood. One theory is that inflammation in the mouth causes blood vessels elsewhere to become inflamed. This inflammation restricts blood flow in the body, causing the heart to work harder, which increases blood pressure.

 Cancer Studies have reported a “surprising” connection between gum disease and the risk for various cancers.

Gerald P. Curatola, D.D.S. wrote in Dr. OZ Magazine: “…gum disease has been identified as the body’s most abundant source of chronic low-grade inflammation which is described as a smoldering fire in your body where the alarm bell is not answered. This causes a decrease in the body’s immune response, and eventually, irreversible damage to the immune system, which is being identified as a likely factor for the increased cancer risk.”

Pregnancy Hormonal changes women experience during pregnancy can increase their risk for periodontitis. Development of a fetus in the womb may be interfered with by infection and inflammation in other parts of the body. Many factors can contribute to low birth weight and premature birth. Researchers are still studying this connection.

As research continues into the importance of oral hygiene to overall health, My Scottsdale Dentist will continue to keep you informed of the best ways to protect your dental health. Contact us to schedule your next appointment.