Dental care

6 medical conditions can affect your family's oral health

December 11 , 2019
Dr. Diala Ghalayini
Dr....More

There are many medical conditions that can affect oral health in different ways, so if you or any of your family members has a certain medical condition, then you should be aware of the symptoms it might cause, and inform your dentist all about it from the beginning.  

Some medical conditions affect oral health, others may affect the type of treatment you get and the materials used by the dental team.

That’s why it’s important to give your dentist your medical information, any medications you are taking or allergies.

Those conditions that can affect your oral health may include the following:

1. Diabetes:

By reducing the body's resistance to infection, diabetes puts your gums at risk. Gum disease appears to be more frequent and severe among people who have diabetes.

Research shows that people who have gum disease have a harder time controlling their blood sugar levels.

Regular periodontal care can improve diabetes control. That’s why it’s important for diabetic patients to get regular checkups and cleaning appointments
 

2. Osteoporosis: 

This bone-weakening disease is linked with periodontal bone loss and tooth loss.

Certain drugs used to treat osteoporosis carry a small risk of damage to the bones of the jaw. Surgical dental treatments must be perceived with extreme caution.

3. Alzheimer's disease: 

Worsening oral health is seen as Alzheimer's disease and related disorders progress, due to the negative impact these diseases have on cognitive abilities.

Aggressiveness of the patients has been consistently reported as a barrier for providing appropriate oral hygiene care, and treatment.

Patient’s inability to communicate oral pain or discomfort. It is important to provide early interventions and establish an adequate level of oral hygiene as soon as possible.

4. Buleimia/ anorexia:

Eating disorders which symptoms include vomiting, malnourishment. Such diseases might weaken the jawbone leading to tooth loss, also acids from the stomach pass through the mouth during vomiting, can erode the teeth causing sensitivity, tooth discoloration and tooth loss in the worst cases.

5. Hypertension:

Certain drugs used to control hypertension can cause the gums to overgrow and can cause the patient to have a dry mouth, or low salivary flow rate. This might increase the patient’s caries rate.

6. Cardiac diseases and medications:

Certain blood thinning drugs affect the way we do our treatment regarding timing and materials used. Blood thinners increase the rate of bleeding, so certain procedures should be performed under certain precautions.

In some conditions, especially if the patient had a recent surgery done, some elective procedures should be postponed, other urgent procedures should be done under antibiotic coverage. It all depends on the patient’s general health and the dental procedure.

It is not unusual for the dentist to contact the treating physician to inquire about the patient’s overall health, and whether any special precautions are needed for the patient’s condition

Tell your dentist about the medications you take and about changes in your overall health, especially if you've recently been ill or you have a chronic condition, such as diabetes.