Cognitive Impairment Linked to Tooth Loss

Posted by on Jan 22, 2014 in Blogs | 0 comments

possible mild cognitive impairmentWhile losing multiple teeth can definitely lead to some difficulty when it comes to chewing food, can it also mean other problems down the road?

Researchers from the Panel Study of Living Conditions of the Oldest Old in 2002 have found evidence that tooth loss can lead to a higher chance of developing cognitive impairment. The research involved 557 Swedish participants over the age of 77. The study demonstrated that regardless of sex, age, education level, or mental health, an individual who had a difficult time chewing was more likely to become cognitive impaired.

Studies show that the leading reason for tooth loss is gum disease. Men are more likely than women to have their tooth removed, and tooth loss becomes more prevalent over the age of 35.

But tooth loss and gum disease doesn’t just come by itself. Studies shown that 40% of patients have never received professional dental maintenance and most patients (60%) said that they either never or occasionally brush their teeth.

Aside from cognitive impairment, patients, along with tooth loss, also suffer from other health problems. Type II diabetes is heavily correlated with gum disease, along with high blood pressure. Although there are no tests demonstrating that these diseases directly cause tooth loss, there is an undeniable link between them.

The American Dental Association continues to stress the importance of maintaining healthy teeth and preventing tooth loss. The ADA recommends brushing teeth twice a day with a soft-bristled brush. Studies currently show that only about 16% of patients report brushing their teeth at least twice a day. Also don’t forget flossing! Flossing is a crucial step towards good oral health, helping to removing plaque from crevices between teeth that a toothbrush can’t reach.

Let’s beat these statistics and brush and floss more on a daily basis! Preventing tooth loss can mean both a healthier smile and a healthier you! If you have any more questions, feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questionsContact us today at 781-237-9071 or smile@wellesleydentalgroup.com

References:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23035667
http://www.colgate.com/app/CP/US/EN/OC/Information/Articles/ADA/2013/article/ADA-12-Study-Finds-Tooth-Loss-Boosts-Cognitive-Impairment.cvsp
http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/news/20051111/9-risk-factors-for-tooth-loss

Image: http://www.nextavenue.org/sites/default/files/what_is_mild_cognitive_impairment_134031979.jpg

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