Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Women and Dental Health

A woman’s oral health needs are unique, and they change over time. Brushing, flossing and regularly visiting your dentist are important in keeping your teeth and mouth healthy. However, there are times in your life that you need to take extra care of yourself and visit your dentist more than usual. This is especially when your body goes through changes such as pregnancy, menstruation, puberty and menopause.

When There Are Changes In The Body
During puberty, hormones will start to fluctuate, making gums susceptible to gingivitis. This causes the gums to swell, become red and tender and bleed easily. The same thing happens during menstruation. During this time, women are also more prone to developing cold sores and canker sores, which can be painful and disturbing.

Gingivitis also develops during pregnancy, and in fact is something very common among many pregnant women. Hormonal changes during this time changes the way the body responds to plaque, thereby exaggerating the way the body responds to it. The plaque irritates the gums, causing tenderness, sensitivity and bleeding. Hormones also cause changes in the composition of saliva, reducing its capacity to fight bacteria. Some women experience dry mouths, too, which make the mouth more prone to cavity formation.
The menopausal stage also brings about quite a number of oral conditions such as dry mouth, a change in taste perception and regular burning sensations.

Other Health Conditions
There are also some health conditions that are generally associated with women, and these include osteoporosis and eating disorders.
Almost 90% of all eating disorder sufferers are female. One side effect of most eating disorders is the development of dental health problems. Eating disorders can cause malnutrition, which can affect the health of the gums and soft tissue inside the mouth. Chronic dry mouth can cause problems. Throwing up frequently exposes the teeth to acids which damages the enamel and causes breakage and damage.
Women are also four times more likely to develop osteoporosis, which causes bone loss in many areas of the body, including the jaw. Research shows that this occurrence may lead to tooth loss because the density of the structure supporting the teeth is decreased. Combined with gum disease, osteoporosis speeds up tooth loss.
Given these possible risks, it is really important to visit your dentist regularly so that he or she can also address oral health problems brought about by changes you experience in your body.

A Family Dental Care Center
2030 West Main St.
Jeffersonville, PA 19403

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