The Huffington Post (huffingtonpost.co.uk) – by Dr Paul Zollinger-Read
Friday, August 02, 2013
Two minutes in the morning and two minutes at night. Maintaining good oral health doesn’t take up much time at all in the grand scheme of your busy day. But don’t underestimate the importance of those four little minutes. Not only does regular brushing help keep your teeth and gums healthy, it may also hold some protection against a number of chronic disease, with the latest research pointing the toothbrush at Alzheimer’s disease.
Published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, scientist found unusually high levels ofPorphyromonas gingivalis, a type of bacteria which causes gum disease, in brain samples from 10 deceased dementia patients. The researchers have suggested that the bacteria may make its way from the mouth to the brain, via the bloodstream, triggering the immune system to release chemicals which can kill brain cells.
Although this latest study hasn’t proven that this type of bacterium causes Alzheimer’s disease, it has shown that bacteria found in the mouth can get to the brain. If anything, it’s likely that these bacteria could make existing dementia worse – although not necessarily cause it.