Gum disease could lead to cognitive decline and dementia, according to recent study
As we’ve shared in many of our articles, your mouth is the gateway to the rest of your body.
With its rich network of blood vessels and absorbent gum tissues, the mouth is an ideal environment for bacteria to thrive and enter the bloodstream, causing infection and inflammation in other parts of your body.
Many discoveries have shown how our oral health links to the health of the rest of our body. Please take a look at our article, “How Does Poor Oral Health Affect The Rest Of Your Body”, to read how poor oral health links to diabetes, heart disease, stroke and pancreatic cancer.
Now, more discoveries are emerging assessing the effect oral health has on the brain. A recent review published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society suggests that gum disease and tooth loss could be associated with cognitive decline and dementia.
Although the analysis concluded that the evidence is limited, the effects of gum disease on cognitive decline cannot be ruled out.
Dementia and gum disease
Dementia is a syndrome associated with a gradual decline of cognitive function, including memory, thinking, reasoning and the ability to carry out day-to-day activities. Dementia is often preceded by mild cognitive impairment. People with signs of milder forms of cognitive decline, such as losing or forgetting things and trouble articulating words, are at higher risk of developing dementia.
Currently, around 55 million people worldwide are living with dementia, with the number of people estimated to reach 129 million by 2050. There is no way to treat dementia or cognitive impairment, making it essential to understand and mitigate risk factors for these conditions.
Until recently, many experts thought that inadequate oral hygiene due to an impaired ability to carry out daily duties was responsible for the poor oral health found in people with dementia. However, recent studies have shown that poor oral health, including gum disease, may contribute to cognitive decline and dementia.
The link between oral and cognitive health
The recent meta-analysis included 47 longitudinal studies – 24 for cognitive decline and 23 for dementia – assessing the link between periodontal health and dementia. Periodontal health was assessed based on increased gum pocket depth, tooth loss, alveolar bone loss and the presence of periodontitis.
The review concluded that periodontitis and tooth loss was associated with an increased risk of cognitive decline and dementia.
The authors of this study cautioned that the evidence was of low quality due to the variation among the analyzed studies used to assess periodontal health and cognitive function. Moreover, the individuals used for the study were over 65 years old, which could have biased the results in favor of a positive association between periodontal health and cognitive decline. Therefore, more standardized methods are needed to assess this link further.
That said, the results clearly suggest that early treatment of oral health problems can help reduce the risk of cognitive decline and dementia.
Good-Gums as a preventative
Along with a healthy diet and lifestyle, using a natural oral health product devoid of all toxins and chemicals is, without a doubt, the best thing you can do for your oral (and overall) health.
This is why we recommend completely giving up using toothpaste! We know that’s hard to hear for some of you, but most kinds of toothpaste are filled with harmful toxins and chemicals detrimental to your health, oral and otherwise. Even the “natural” kinds of toothpaste from health food stores contain glycerin, which forms an invisible coating over your teeth and gums that acts as a barrier to essential nutrients and significantly hinders your body’s natural healing processes.
Good-Gums tooth and gum formula is made from 100% natural ingredients and jam-packed full of vital nutrients that are designed to be easily absorbed by your gums, giving nutrition to your entire body.
We use myrrh, peppermint, baking soda, French grey sea salt, cinnamon, cranberry, vitamin C, and citrus bioflavonoids – and nothing else! If you’d like to know more about the potent, powerful qualities of each ingredient we use, check out our ingredients list.
Your mouth is the window to the rest of your bodily health, so by looking after your gums, it’s not just gum disease you keep at bay.
Click here to try Good-Gums.