Could Poor Dental Health Signal a Faltering Mind?

Poor oral health has been linked to heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis and Alzheimer’s. The following study shows a direct correlation between tooth loss and severe gum disease with poorer cognitive function as compared to those who have maintained optimal oral health. Read on to learn more, and remember that your oral health is just as important as your overall health.

Tooth loss and bleeding gumsmight be a sign of declining thinking skills among the middle-aged, a new study contends.


“We were interested to see if people with poor dental health had relatively poorer cognitive function, which is a technical term for how well people do with memory and with managing words and numbers,” said study co-author Gary Slade, a professor in the department of dental ecology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

“What we found was that for every extra tooth that a person had lost or had removed, cognitive function went down a bit,” Slade said. “People who had none of their teeth had poorer cognitive function than people who did have teeth, and people with fewer teeth had poorer cognition than those with more.”

“The same was true when we looked at patients with severe gum disease,” he said.

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