How Menopause Affect Your Teeth
Menopause is associated with dramatic hormonal swings that can cause numerous symptoms ranging from irritability and hot flashes to insomnia and irregular periods. Menopause can also affect your teeth. As your hormones fluctuate, your gums can become more sensitive to plaque and bacteria.
Your gums may appear puffy or swollen, and they may even bleed, particularly when you brush or floss your teeth. Before chalking it up to just another sign of menopause, you should know that menopause increases your risk of gum disease. Because gum disease is linked to cardiovascular disease, diabetes complications, breast cancer and dementia, it is important that you have any symptoms evaluated.
A comprehensive periodontal evaluation can identify any symptoms of gum disease, and our dentist may recommend treatment options that can reduce your risk or restore gum health. Although menopause triggers gum sensitivity, gum disease is not unavoidable. In fact, twice-daily brushing and daily flossing can help control the plaque. Regular dental cleanings can remove the plaque from those hard-to-reach places.
Untreated, gum disease can lead to receding gums, lost teeth and bone loss in the jaw. It can be a serious cosmetic, dental and overall health issue. Watch for symptoms of gum disease, including:
• Red gums
• Swollen gums
• Receding gums
• Pockets of pus along the gumline
• Loose or separating teeth
• Chronic bad breath
• A change in bite