The links between good oral health and a healthy body continue to grow in number. Here are just a few of the latest findings:
Colorectal Cancers: Researchers say they have uncovered an oral bacteria that can set off a chain reaction leading to cancers of the bowel. Called fusobacteria, this microbe can cause an overactive immune response that may actually turn on cancer growth genes
Scientists hope that the identification of fusobacteria may lead to earlier detection and perhaps ways to combat the disease by eliminating the bacteria.
Oral Cancers: Chronic gum disease may leave the mouth more susceptible to cancers of the mouth, head and neck. In several studies, patients whose gum disease had no or minimal treatment were shown to have a higher risk of developing such cancers.
Dementia: Poor oral care or the presence of gum disease may lead to an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease. Researchers reported that elderly folks who brushed their teeth less than once a day were up to 65% more likely to develop dementia than those who brushed regularly. Studies have also shown that people with Alzheimer’s have more gum disease-related bacteria in their brains than people without Alzheimer’s.