The link between gum disease and Alzheimer’s
(NaturalHealth365) There are a lot of reasons to brush and floss on a regular basis. But now scientists at research facilities in many areas of the world say they have found a link between unhealthy gums and Alzheimer’s disease.
Lakshmyya Kesavalu, an associate professor in the College of Dentistry at the University of Florida, joined with a team of international researchers to examine brain tissues of 10 Alzheimer’s patients. They then compared the samples to brain samples from non-Alzheimer’s patients. Their findings suggest a link between poor oral health and varying degrees of dementia.
One uneducated visit to the dentist can have devastating effects on your health! Register now for the Holistic Oral Health Summit and discover the best ways to avoid disease.
Warning: Oral bacterium found inside brain tissue
The scientists discovered a component of the oral bacterium Porphyromonas gingivalis in four out of the 10 brain samples from Alzheimer’s patients that were examined. However, in looking at the same number of brain samples from non-Alzheimer’s patients, the researchers found no evidence of the oral bacterium.
The study’s findings add to growing evidence showing that oral health is a vital part of maintaining an overall healthy mind and body. By the way, as I’m sure you know by now, many other studies have linked gum disease to heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes. (to name a few)
While Kesavalu is cautious about stating that gum disease causes Alzheimer’s disease, he has gone so far as to conclude that the results of the study clearly indicate an association between the two. The study, published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, was the first to show a link between components of oral bacteria and Alzheimer’s disease.
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Earlier research had found that when mice were purposefully infected with major periodontal pathogens, the oral bacterium moved on to the brains as well. This earlier study with mice supports the later research now done on human brain tissue.
The stakes are high: We’ve got to educate the public about this threat to human health
Register now for the Holistic Oral Health Summit and discover the best ways to avoid disease.
The study’s findings are significant since gingivitis is found in 97 percent of the human population, making it more prevalent than even the common cold. Meanwhile, Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S., according to the Alzheimer’s Association.
No doubt, the toll is high not only in human lives, but in dollars as well, costing the country over $200 billion on an annual basis.
Staggering statistics: One in three senior citizens ultimately dies of Alzheimer’s or similar dementia condition
Now that the link between oral bacterium components and Alzheimer’s disease has been identified, the researchers are planning to conduct additional research to determine what causal associations may exist. According to Kesavalu, that is likely to take the form of additional experiments using periodontal bacteria and Alzheimer’s disease in mice.
Although researchers stopped short of stating that the findings were proof that oral bacteria cause Alzheimer’s disease, the acknowledged association underscores the need for preventing gum disease. Taking care of your oral health doesn’t have to be a complex or costly routine, however.
Just follow these four easy steps to ensure healthy gums and avoid the unwanted pain associated with gum disease.
- Learn how to properly brush your teeth – every day.
- Floss, as needed.
- Visit a qualified biological (holistic) dentist – as part of your healthcare team.
- Register now for the Holistic Oral Health Summit and discover the best ways to reverse disease.
About the author: Jonathan Landsman is the host of NaturalHealth365.com, the NaturalNews Talk Hour – a free, weekly health show and the NaturalHealth365 INNER CIRCLE – a monthly subscription to the brightest minds in natural health and healing.
Reaching hundreds of thousands of people, worldwide, as a personal health consultant, writer and radio talk show host – Jonathan has been educating the public on the health benefits of an organic (non-GMO) diet along with high-quality supplementation and healthy lifestyle habits including exercise and meditation.
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