Keeping your bones healthy has a great affect on the health of your mouth. It seems odd, but when you think about the bones that construct the jaw and hold your teeth in place, it makes sense to care for your bones just like you care for your teeth. Bone diseases like osteoporosis have a significant affect on your oral health and dental bones.
Dental Bone Loss
The jawbone supports our teeth, and that bone is known as the alveolar process. There is a correlation between the loss of alveolar bone and increase in tooth loss. This is because when the bone starts to weaken, the teeth become loose and can even fall out.
Periodontitis is an oral health infection that affects gums and the bones that support the teeth. Bacteria eats away at the bone and connective tissue that hold the teeth in place. Loss of the alveolar bone and the break down of the mineral bone density leaves the bones more prone to tooth loss.
The break down in bone density can be caused by chronic diseases. There is a clear relationship between periodontitis and other diseases that affect bone density, such as osteoporosis. Although osteoporosis affects everyone, women with osteoporosis are more susceptible to have issues with oral surgical procedures or have poorly-fitting dentures.
Osteoporosis and Oral Health
Osteoporosis is a chronic disease that causes bones capable of breaking easily and can trigger low bone density, causing a major impact on the jawbone that supports the teeth. The main causes of osteoporosis are aging, menopause, and lack of nutrients like vitamin D.
Because of this, osteoporosis can have a direct negative effect on gum and periodontal disease, leading to loss of teeth. Osteoporosis has a huge impact on the jawbone that supports the teeth. When the jawbone is affected by chronic bone diseases, other dental issues are eminent. In fact, studies show that osteoporosis is an aggravating factor in periodontal destruction.
Women’s Health and Dental Health
Because women are more susceptible to suffering from osteoporosis, it is no surprise that women also have a higher likelihood of having dental issues and oral health problems.
This is especially true for women who are entering, or already in, their menopausal phase because of hormone imbalances. Menopause can trigger the resorption of bones, triggering a decline in bone density. This increases bone loss and can even be the cause of bone disease like osteoporosis. The bones can become porous and increase the bones’ risk of fractures or breaks. Women can help lower their risk by taking supplements, increasing their calcium intake, or by undergoing hormone therapy to encourage a healthy hormone balance.
Women who suffer from osteoporosis are more likely to experience difficulty with healing after oral surgeries, dental procedures, or have ill-fitting dentures.
Risk Factors Associated with Osteoporosis and Periodontal Disease
There is a direct correlation between osteoporosis and periodontal disease due to a number of risk factors.
- Smoking – Smoking is a leading cause of oral health issues that can trigger bone diseases and increase the risk of osteoporosis.
- Diet – A diet lacking proper nutrients like vitamin D and calcium can eventually lead to bone disease and periodontal disease.
- Hormone imbalance – The use of corticosteroids due to a hormone imbalance caused by menopause or low estrogen levels have been known to cause medical disorders that lead to poor bone health and dental issues.
- High caffeine intake – A high intake of caffeine can lead to immune dysfunctions, increasing the likelihood of bone disease.
A high-calcium diet is key to preventing osteoporosis and oral health issues. Taking a supplement is not sufficient in providing the body with enough nutrients that come from calcium-rich foods. Foods such as broccoli and kale have fortified calcium, as well as dairy products such as milk and plain yogurt.
Patients who rely on supplements oftentimes experience negative side effects such as constipation, indigestion, and an increased risk of kidney stones. A study by JAMA’s Internal Medicine shows that more than 11,000 deaths can be related to heart diseases caused by continual use of calcium supplements.
If you have oral health issues due to osteoporosis, speak to your doctor today.