Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Tooth Loss, Cognitive Decline, and a Real-Life Example

Coincidentally, the following two stories made headlines in the same day:

First, researchers at Boston U's dental school have concluded a prospective study which showed that for each tooth lost, the ability to perform well on a cognitive test decreased 8-10%.  Scientists are hypothesizing that the decline could be related to the inflammation that accompanies tooth loss.  Other studies have shown elevated inflammation markers in people who have Alzheimer's disease. 

The study was published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.  Story from physorg.com.

Need some proof?  Look no further than Highway 402 in Ontario, Canada; where a trucker was recently charged with careless driving for performing some good old fashioned do-it-yourself dentistry on the go.  (I guess this is actually a case of decreased cognitive ability during tooth loss, not after).  The plan was to tie one end of a string to the roof of the cab with the other end around his tooth and then to wait for "one good bump" to pull it out - which is exactly what happened.  The lone hiccup in his plan?  The fact that he was "traveling erratically" as reported by another driver.

Just in case you're wondering, dentistry on wheels looks something like this:

Rally Car Dentistry - Watch more Funny Videos

Full story from CBC news.

Apparently we need a few more truckstop dentists out there!  Seriously though people, driving under the influence of dentistry is a careless and selfish act that endangers everyone around you.  Just avoid the temptation altogether.  When you know you'll be driving, make sure you hire a designated dentist.  Or if you're going to be doing dentistry, find a designated driver.  Either way works.


mariahsmile said...

Interesting. My research project in hygiene school was on the link between oral health and Alzheimer's Disease.

Bob said...

Wait, now it's bad you have your teeth pulled? Should I have kept my wisdom teeth?