Hormonal changes can have a significant impact on oral health. Recent research has shown that women are more susceptible to gum disease during various spikes in their hormones. This can result in canker sores, increased gum soreness, increased bleeding, increased swelling, and a greater sensitivity to plaque. Ongoing inflammation can eventually result in gum loss, jaw bone loss, tooth loss, and even a higher risk of cancer and heart disease.
This means it is especially important for women to follow the base dental recommendations. Those who brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and floss once a day tend not to have noteworthy problems. However, it’s good to know why an individual is at increased risk for a certain condition and how that risk factor operates within the general schema of dental health.
Puberty and Dental Health for Women
Hormones during puberty result in increased sensitivity to plaque which is why teenagers tend to get canker sores more often than adults. Canker sores are annoying, painful, and can last for a week or more. They often develop around small abrasions in the mouth, but can manifest on their own.
Your Period and Your Dental Health
Many women won’t notice, especially those who have a good dental routine, but your gums are more sensitive during your period. While gum discomfort may be a sign that your period is nigh, those who suffer regular gum bleeding, gum pain, and other issues may have more serious issues. The more your gums are exposed to plaque, the higher likelihood of developing advanced gum disease. Thus, your period can act as an early warning system for advanced gum disease.
Some women develop gingivitis during pregnancy. Again, it’s because their gums are more sensitive to plaque that is already there. Studies have shown that the discomfort can be reduced by brushing twice a day and flossing.
Menopause and Dental Health
Menopause can cause all of the same problems that other hormonal surges cause, but additionally, you will have to contend with bone loss and dry mouth. Dry mouth doubles the potential inflammation because you are not producing enough saliva to digest small food particles between your teeth.
The Bottom Line
What we’ve learned is that women are more sensitive to plaque when they experience hormonal changes. Treating gum disease in the early stages is important. The earlier we get to it, the less likely it is to cause permanent damage. Call Peak Family Dental Care in Flagstaff today and we can begin discussing your next steps immediately.