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Brushing teeth could ward off Alzheimer’s


Brushing your teeth regularly is a good way to avoid gum disease and, according to new research, the practice could possibly help you to avoid Alzheimer’s as well, as scientists reveal that the same bacteria that cause the gums to bleed also affect brain health and memory. This suggests that treatment for gum disease could be effective with Alzheimer’s.

The research, carried out at Kings College London and the University of Southampton, involved tracking 59 men and women with mild or moderate Alzheimer’s for a six month period. The tests showed that those with gum disease or periodontitis declined much more rapidly than those with healthy teeth and gums. It is thought that the germs activate the immune system, which triggers the release of chemicals within the body, affecting brain function and memory.

Mark Ide, of the Dental Institute at Kings College London said that around 80% of people aged 55 and above have gum disease, a worrying statistic when ‘a number of studies have shown that having few teeth, possibly as a consequence of earlier gum disease, is associated with a greater risk of developing dementia.’  He went on to say that various forms of research have revealed that effective treatment for gum disease could be useful in treating Alzheimer’s or at least slowing the patients decline.


Post-war emergency dentistry student leaves legacy to college


A dentistry training college has received a generous legacy.A dentist who learnt how to perform root canal treatments and other kinds of emergency dentistry after World War II has left a generous legacy after her death.

Diana Trebble (nee Jennings) trained at Kings College London in the late 1940s before going on to take over practices in Ealing and then Minehead.

However, when she died recently, it was found that she had left two-thirds of her estate to the college in order to allow other students to learn as she did.

This amounts to more than £1 million and will be used to create the open Diana Trebble PhD Scholarship.

Head of the Dental Institute Professor Nairn Wilson said: "The Dental Institute is thrilled to receive this most generous gift from the late Mrs Trebble."

King's College London currently trains one-fifth of all dentists in England and Wales and is the largest dental academic centre in the UK.

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