The Neurological Impact of Dental Health | Altoona Dentist


Ensuring good oral hygiene from childhood is crucial, but does it extend beyond just maintaining a healthy smile? Numerous studies have explored the connection between oral health and overall well-being, including brain function. While the research is ongoing, there’s evidence suggesting a link between poor oral health and compromised brain function. Here’s how your oral health can impact various aspects of your body:

  1. Heart Health: Poor oral hygiene can increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases, especially in men. Bacteria from the gums can enter the bloodstream, leading to arterial hardening and potentially causing heart attacks or strokes.
  2. Respiratory Health: Bacteria in the mouth can be inhaled into the lungs, increasing the risk of respiratory infections. Inflamed gums and teeth can exacerbate respiratory issues.
  3. Brain Function: Research has indicated a potential connection between poor oral health and dementia. Bacteria from gingivitis might enter the brain through nerve pathways or the bloodstream, contributing to cognitive decline.

A recent study by Rutgers University found a significant relationship between oral health and cognitive aspects like memory and general function. Poor oral health was associated with memory impairment and decreased attention and learning abilities. Additionally, high levels of stress, often linked to poor oral health, can further exacerbate cognitive decline.

To mitigate these risks, prioritize your oral hygiene routine:

  • Brush your teeth at least twice daily with fluoride toothpaste.
  • Floss daily to maintain healthy gums and prevent decay between teeth.
  • Use mouthwash to kill bacteria and enhance oral health.
  • Visit your dentist biannually for professional cleanings and examinations.

At Altoona Dental, serving as your trusted Altoona Dentist, we’re committed to your dental health and overall well-being. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment and take proactive steps toward maintaining a healthy smile and body.

Altoona Dental
Phone: (515) 967-4211
107 8th St. SE
Altoona, IA 50009