Two recent studies report that gum disease may contribute to Alzheimer’s disease. In one study, researchers found that bacteria that causes a common form of gum disease, P. gingivalis (Pg), can travel to the brain and release enzymes that destroy nerve cells, which eventually can lead to Alzheimer’s. While this research may lead to new medications to target the enzymes produced by Pg bacteria, it underscores the importance of staying vigilant about oral hygiene. In addition to brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily, be sure to get regular dental checkups—typically two visits a year. And alert your dentist if you have any symptoms of gum disease, such as bleeding, swollen, or receding gums. We know, too, that there are links between gum disease and heart disease. So clearly, just like getting exercise and eating well, taking good care of your teeth and gums can yield big benefits.
Source: Porphyromonas gingivalis in Alzheimer’s disease brains: Evidence for disease causation and treatment with small-molecule inhibitors
“No mental health without oral health.” Steve Kisley, M.D.,Ph.D.