There is nothing quite so captivating as a bright white smile, but as you get older you may notice that your teeth just aren't as vibrant and healthy as they once were. However, a new study published by the European Journal of Oral Sciences may give you a whole new reason to ramp up your oral hygiene regimen.
According to reports, a team of researchers from Sweden and Norway have collaborated on an investigation of the link between dental health and cognitive ability over time. The study was based on previous research indicating that the presence of natural teeth had been associated with increased memory retention in various animal models. To establish if this correlation existed in humans, the scientists recruited 273 people over the age of 55 and subjected them to a series of memory-based tests. LiveScience states that the participants selected for the study had an average of 22 natural teeth—10 less than a full set of 32 adult teeth.
Upon conducting these exams, the researchers found that participants with more natural teeth displayed better memory retention. However, though this finding supported the team's hypothesis, the exact nature of this relationship remains unclear.
"It is possible that losing natural teeth reduces sensory signals that teeth send to the brain, affecting its functions, including memory," the researchers reportedly posited. Other possibilities included the fact that poor oral health could result in inflammation that might affect cognitive ability, and that the loss of natural teeth may prevent people from seeking out certain nutrient-rich foods.
It remains to be seen just how oral hygiene impacts mental function over time, but this finding may be enough to encourage people in Houston to devote a bit more time to brushing and flossing every day. To learn more about the lifestyle changes that can help you age gracefully, contact Longevity Centres of America today. In addition to nutritional guidance, we also offer hormone pellet implants, infusion therapy and other anti-aging treatments.