Do Eating Disorders Affect Your Teeth?
Anorexia and bulimia are eating disorders that can cause a lot of problems to your health. Heart problems, cognitive impairment, malnutrition, hypothermia, and depression are some of the diseases linked to these eating disorders. Many people are also not aware that these two eating disorders can severely affect your teeth.
The effect of these eating disorders may not be obvious to your friends and family, but the dentist surely can spot them.
How Anorexia and Bulimia Affect Your Teeth
In anorexia, the patient will have an intense fear of gaining weight, depriving herself of food. This means that her body isn’t getting the nutrient it needs because she’s not eating. Our teeth need calcium to strengthen, and by not eating, osteoporosis can develop and eventually weaken the patient’s jaw that supports the teeth. This can lead to tooth loss.
A bulimic patient, on the other hand, will engage in binge eating and then vomiting to get rid of the food that she just consumed. The stomach acids that pass through the mouth can erode the patient’s tooth enamel, leading to discoloration, cavities and eventually tooth loss.
Signs of Eating Disorders in the Mouth
You need to look for warning signs if your dental health may be affected by an eating disorder. Some of the signs you need to watch out for include cracked lips, sensitive teeth, sores in the mouth, dry mouth, gum pain, chronic sore throat, tooth decay, tender mouth, problems swallowing, and other mouth problems.
See a dentist immediately for a routine checkup. Only a dentist can identify and treat problems in your mouth.
The treatment may include meticulous oral care, including flossing and moisturizing the mouth with water, especially in patients with dry mouth. It’s also recommended that you frequently visit your dentist so he can monitor and track your progress.
Other treatments include fluoride rinses and using only sugar-free mount rinses, and brushing an hour after eating, so the stomach acids are not pushed deeper into the patient’s mouth.
Let the Dentist Help
Fortunately, the dentist can correct the deteriorated enamel, and there are several options for tooth loss. However, the patient still needs help with the eating disorders. She can fully recover only when the underlying causes are treated. If you have this eating disorder, we recommend that you also see a medical professional who can effectively help you treat these eating disorders. Don’t worry; there is always help available.
Contact Suburban Essex Dental
We offer exceptional dental care services in West Orange, NJ, and our dentists have been treating patients for over 3 decades. We have been awarded top dentist in NJ for 11 straight years! Whether you need emergency or preventative care, we can help. Visit us today or contact us if you have questions.