Dentistry and DementiaThursday, January 3rd, 2013, 9:53 pm
The risk of developing dementia later in life has been linked to dentistry, actually to oral health!
A University of California study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society looked at residents of Leisure World, a retirement community in California. This long term study looked at oral health habits and dental visits, tooth loss and number of natural teeth remaining. The 5,468 adults, who had no prior diagnosis of dementia, were followed from 1992 to 2010. The researchers discovered that those people who reported brushing their teeth less than once per day had up to a 65% greater risk of developing dementia that those who brushed 3 times per day.
The researchers also discovered that dentures made a difference for those who had lost teeth. Men who did not wear dentures and therefore had an impaired ability to chew their food had a 91% greater risk of dementia! Women had also had an increased risk but at a lower rate.
The goal for all of us it to live a long, healthy life and good oral health is key to achieving this. The ability to chew food effectively is the first step in our digestive process, the process that gives our bodies the fuel they need to function. Remove this ability and the entire body suffers.
Tooth loss can be avoided through good oral care at home and regular dental visits. For those who experience tooth loss it is important to replace the missing teeth – they are not there just to make your smile more attractive. For one or two missing teeth a dental bridge can be used. Dental implants offer a more lifelike, permanent replacement option.
Patients who have lost all of their teeth have options too. Regular dentures are the choice for many patients but did you know that you can used dental implants to anchor a special type of denture so that slipping dentures will never happen to you. Dental implants offer the additional feature of helping to preserve the health of the jaw bone which normally shrinks when teeth are removed.
Contact Wilbanks Smile Center in Toccoa, GA today at 706-886-9439 to schedule your next appointment. Working together, we can help you achieve and keep a healthy, beautiful smile for life!