For most people in Houston, brushing their teeth and flossing every day is just habit – something they've always done. When you think about the benefits of good oral hygiene, what comes to mind? Do you keep up this habit to avoid costly (and, for many, nerve-wracking) trips to the dentist, to make sure you keep your teeth for years to come or simply to keep your smile as pearly white as ever? Whatever motivates you to perform this act twice a day, keep it up. A new study has recently revealed that gum disease could be linked to a painful condition that could impair your aging longevity in a big way.

According to a press release from the University of Louisville in Kentucky, researchers have found that bacteria linked to gingivitis could be connected to rheumatoid arthritis.

In the new research, "the scientists found that P. gingivalis produces a unique enzyme, peptidylarginine deiminanse (PAD) which then enhances collagen-induced arthritis (CIA), a form of arthritis similar to [rheumatoid arthritis] produced in the lab," the source states. 

If you have, or know anyone with this condition, you have some idea of just how excruciating it can be. While osteoarthritis is caused by long-term wear and tear, rheumatoid arthritis is categorized as an autoimmune disorder because the body's natural defenses actually attack healthy tissue, resulting in painful inflammation of the joints. As of yet, there is no cure for this disease, but by better understanding it, scientists hope to improve current treatments and prevention methods. 

To learn more about the lifestyle habits that can help you age gracefully, contact the anti-aging doctors at Longevity Centres of America today.