IS THERE A CONNECTION BETWEEN FEMALE HORMONES AND PERIODONTAL DISEASE?
Yes, there is a connection among hormones in women (such as, estrogen and progesterone) and periodontal, or gum, disease. Throughout the major stages of the life of a woman (menopause, pregnancy, and puberty), significant changes in hormone production can disturb your gum health. For women in Cary, NC it’s essential to be conscious of how your hormones change your gum health and what you can do to bypass issues. In this blog by our team at DentalWorks – Cary Crossroads, we talk about the stages where women are susceptible to periodontal, or gum, disease and how you can strengthen your oral health. Concentrating on your gum health can allow you to avoid issues like loose teeth and a receding gumline as a result of gingivitis and periodontitis (the two stages of gum disease). If you have any concerns, questions, or issues regarding your oral health, we encourage you to call our dental practice in Cary, NC to arrange an oral health consultation and examination with our knowledgeable dental team.
WHEN WOMEN ARE PRONE TO HORMONAL CHANGES
It is during three main stages of life when a woman’s hormones fluctuate significantly and negatively impact her teeth and gums. These are menopause, pregnancy, and puberty. Using synthetic hormone-based birth control methods may also disrupt your gum health. Being cautious of when to anticipate gum sensitivity and inflammation may allow you to worry less if you detect that your gums are red or bleeding at specific instances. Nevertheless, you should communicate all worries to our dental team in Cary, NC so they can find out if your symptoms are correlated to hormone changes or periodontal (gum) disease.
- MENOPAUSE GUM PROBLEMS
During perimenopause and menopause, most women notice physical changes when their hormone production decreases. One common complaint during this period is a dry mouth. Less saliva production means less bacteria and plaque are cleaned away naturally throughout the day, which can increase your risk of gum disease. If you have a dry mouth, make sure you are drinking more water and rinse with a mouthwash formulated to help with dry mouth.
- PREGNANCY GINGIVITIS
Like the start of puberty, when a woman is pregnancy there is a change in hormone activity. High levels of progesterone, especially during the last six months, put women at higher risk of gingivitis, which is the earliest stage of gum disease.
- BIRTH CONTROL-RELATED GUM RISKS
Methods of birth control that are hormone based for women (typically, taken as an injection or daily pill) may affect your gum health. The synthetic hormones used to prevent pregnancy may lead to inflammation in your gums and jawbone. Tell your dentist or hygienist about any medications you are taking and talk to your prescribing doctor about trying different medications if your current birth control is making your gums tender, swollen, or bleed easily.
- PUBERTY GUM SENSITIVITY
Within the first stages of puberty and during the teenage years, women have a surge in hormone production. This could create elevated blood flow to the gum tissue, producing tender, inflamed, and red gums. Sensitivity in your gums might continue to be an issue for a handful of days prior to a woman’s period has started as a side effect of PMS (premenstrual syndrome).
WHAT CAN I DO TO IMPROVE MY GUM HEALTH?
When you notice sensitivity or swelling of your gums are related to your menstrual cycle or other fluctuations in your endocrine system, there are plenty of ways to help boost your gum health. It starts with a good routine at home with daily brushing and flossing plus bi-annual visits to a dentist’s office in Cary, NC for oral health examinations and professional cleanings. If you’re still concerned about gum problems, speak to your dentist so they can provide personalized recommendations.
- DAILY FLOSSING
Whether you choose to floss before or after brushing your teeth, make sure you are flossing once a day or more. If you are new to flossing, your gums may be a little sore and bleed at first; however, your gums will get healthier and stronger over time.
- PROFESSIONAL DENTAL CLEANINGS
Although brushing and flossing at home every day is incredibly important, a professional cleaning removes buildup in hard-to-reach areas. During your cleaning, a dental hygienist uses special tools to carefully remove hardened areas of plaque and tartar without damaging your enamel.
- TALK TO YOUR DENTIST
If you have concerns about the health of your gums or you want to make sure you are brushing and flossing correctly, speak to your dental team in Cary, NC. Be sure to tell your dentist about any prescription or over-the-counter medication you are taking, as well as any medical conditions or general health concerns.
- BRUSHING YOUR TEETH AND GUMS
Using a soft-bristled electric or manual toothbrush, gently brush your teeth and gums twice a day at home. Brushing to clear away bacteria and buildup that causes gingivitis. Massaging your gums with the toothbrush can help to boost blood circulation in the tissue, which will make them stronger.
- ORAL HEALTH EXAMINATIONS
In order to stop gum problems early, schedule an oral health examination once a year. When problems like gingivitis are caught early, you have less invasive treatment options, like scaling and root planing (SRP) therapy, rather than periodontal surgery.
AT EVERY LIFE STAGE, KEEP YOUR GUMS HEALTHY
At every age, make sure your gums are strong and healthy. Schedule a dental examination at a dentist in Cary, NC to check for periodontal (gum) disease. If you are looking for a wonderful team of dental professionals who offer gum treatments like scaling and root planing (SRP) therapy plus periodontal surgery, contact DentalWorks – Cary Crossroads to schedule an appointment. We are always happy to help new patients boost their oral health, so they can have a better smile with healthier gums.