Your Health: Gum disease can have a wider impact – WILX
LANSING, Mich. (WILX) – An estimated 47% of adults 30 and older have gum disease.
That number jumps to 70% for those 65 and older. Gum disease causes red, swollen and bleeding gums. In late stages, it may cause teeth to loosen and fall out.
Brushing twice a day, flossing every day, limiting sugary treats; these are all elements for good dental care.
In a survey, 59% of respondents did not floss once a day and 31% of Americans failed to brush twice a day — 2% admitted to not brushing at all. Poor oral hygiene can lead to gum disease and tooth decay, but researchers from the U.K. have also found it was linked to mental health issues. The researchers looked at medical files for nearly 65,000 people with gum disease. They found 37% also had mental health conditions such as anxiety or depression.
“When we’re stressed, our homeostatic relationships in our bodies are not working as well,” said Dr. David Genet. “Therefore, we get an overgrowth of bacteria, dry mouth.”
Cognitive decline has also been linked to gum disease. A study in Boston linked periodontal disease with an increased buildup of beta-amyloid in the brain. The bottom line is that good oral hygiene doesn’t only just take care of your mouth, but may take care of your mind as well.
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