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Why Gum Disease and Memory Loss Could Be Linked

Alzheimer’s steals so much from the people afflicted; it steals their memories, their lives, and their happiness. Alzheimer’s is a debilitating disease for those afflicted and their families, and there may be a link between Alzheimer’s disease to oral health.

Researchers from New York University found a link between gum inflammation and Alzheimer’s disease. After compiling 20 years of data on the possible link between gum disease and Alzheimer’s disease they found that gum disease at the age of 70 was strongly associated with low scores for cognitive function.

In fact, the study found that those with gum disease were “nine times more likely to score in the lower range of the cognitive test.” This astounding link is also found in a UK based study. The British study found that the P. gingivalis bacterium was present in the brain samples of Alzheimer’s patients. P. gingivalis is a bacterium associated with chronic gum disease.

It is relatively easy for this bacterium to travel from your mouth to your brain and when it does, the brain’s response to the bacterium inadvertently damages functional neurons in the brain that are related to memory.

This link means that taking care of your gums could lower your risk of Alzheimer’s disease.