Eye exam chartThere are already plenty of reasons for keeping a healthy mouth, but we’re going to add one more to the list. New research suggests that there might be a possible link between oral health and age-related blindness. Enjoy the article and thanks for visiting Personal Endodontics.

Gum disease has already been linked with the onset of Alzheimer’s disease and now new research suggests that tooth loss is linked with age-related macular degeneration.

Tooth loss can occur as people age because the jaw bone recedes and so the teeth are unsupported, and as a result they fall out. But more often, tooth loss is the result of gum disease or decay.

Research published in the Journal of Periodontology found that men who had experienced tooth loss were four times more likely to suffer with age-related blindness when compared to the general population.

Age-related macular degeneration occurs when the macula begins to deterioriate, causing a person’s vision to become less sharp.

While some of the relationship between tooth loss and age-related blindness can be put down to common risk factors such as smoking or excessive alcohol intake, the researchers took those risk factors into account and still found that poor oral health was linked to blindness. The same significant result was not seen for women, however.

“What the study does show is how important it is to maintain good gum health,” says Dr Nigel Carter OBE, chief executive of the British Dental Health Foundation.

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