Recently, we found a compelling reason to make sure that you stay current on dental care. We know it’s far away from Joondalup, but a study conducted jointly in Denmark and the US has round a causal link or relationship between periodontal disease and Alzheimer’s disease. The conclusion is that the inflammation in periodontal disease worsens inflammation in the brain, which can worsen dementia.
Can Dental Care Help Cognitive Function?
The study was performed at New York University in the US by Dr Angela Kamer, who is an assistant professor of Periodontology and Implant dentistry there. She was assisted by Douglas E Morse, who is an assistant professor for the College of Dentistry at NYU. A group of researchers in Denmark also assisted with the project.
Dr Kamer had already authored a study in 2008 in which she tested 18 Alzheimer’s patients and 16 control subjects for the antibodies typically found in those with periodontal disease. Twice as many of those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease presented with antibodies for periodontal disease as from the control group.
For the current study, researchers found data from 152 Danish subjects who were found to have periodontal inflammation at the age of 70 and had taken cognitive function tests at age 50 and 70. The subjects took the Digit Symbol Test for cognitive function and took a neurological-psychological test that was designed to detect dementia and brain damage.
To make a long story short, those who had periodontal disease at age 70 were nine times as likely to attain lower scores at age 70 than at age 50. Kamer’s conclusion was that those with periodontal disease are more likely to suffer decline in cognitive function than those who have healthy gums. This is seen as important in developing a pre-test for dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Call 1300 Great Smile
If you’ve been putting off a trip to the dentist, it’s time to make that phone call. Don’t wait until it’s too late to start taking care of your gums and teeth.