Alzheimer’s disease, does periodontitis influence the development of this disease?

Just before summer, the media echoed this shocking news. Due to the importance that this finding could have for the advances in the research of this disease, many patients have asked us for more information.

Alzheimer’s disease
is the most common cause of dementia. It is a disease that causes significant cognitive impairment, characterized by memory loss, language impairment, loss of sense of direction and difficulties in planning tasks or problem solving.

What if one of the causes of Alzheimer’s disease could be an oral infection, and more specifically, periodontitis?

A recent publication in the scientific journal ‘Science Advances’ explains the mechanisms by which the main bacterium in the development of periodontitis‘Porphyromonas gingivalis‘ could be associated in the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

This study follows the line of other relationships between periodontitis and systemic diseases already contrasted. Such as diabetes or myocardial infarction. In all these diseases there is a common factor, the inflammation that occurs in the body.

Patients with advanced periodontitis (11% of the world population) have higher levels of systemic inflammation. And it is precisely this state that seems to be related to the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

Preclinical studies have demonstrated the presence of gingipains (molecules produced by periodontitis bacteria) in the brains of people who have died of Alzheimer’s disease. On the other hand, a human association study conducted in Taiwan concluded that those patients who had a history of periodontitis of more than 10 years were almost 2 times more likely to suffer from Alzheimer’s disease.

However, this new information has to be taken with caution. Experts from Alzheimer Research indicate that it is highly unlikely that a single bacterium is the cause of Alzheimer’s disease.

This information should serve to make oral health a priority, especially in the elderly.

If you want to know the state of your gums, ask for an appointment at Clínica Noguerol. We have been treating gum problems in a specialized way for more than 25 years.

Noguerol Clinic

Periodontics in Granada

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