“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,” said Sim Singhrao, PhD, a senior research fellow at the University of Central Lancashire School of Medicine and Dentistry. “The future of the research aims to discover if P. gingivalis can be used as a marker, via a simple blood test, to predict the development of Alzheimer’s disease in at-risk patients.”
However, more research is needed. As St John Crean, dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry, explains, the link between poor dental hygiene and dementia has yet to be proven.
“We don’t know whether the presence of these bacteria in the brain contributes to the disease, and further research will be needed to investigate this,” said Simon Ridley, PhD, head of research at Alzheimer’s Research U.K.
“This small study suggests that we need more research into this important area,” added Alison Cook, director of external affairs at the U.K.’s Alzheimer’s Society.
While there is still no definitive proof of the link between dental health and Alzheimer’s disease, one thing is for sure; good oral health is important.
If you have any questions about the Link between Dental Health, Gum Disease, & Alzheimer’s, or wish to schedule an appointment, please contact Leikin & Baylin Dental Care of Catonsville, Maryland by calling 410-747-1115 or visit CatonsvilleDentalCare.com. You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.