Your Eating Disorder and Teeth – A Combination that Can Destroy Your Smile
Clues to your overall health and well-being can be found in your mouth. Medical science has proven a solid connection between oral health and general health. You probably expect your doctor to be the one to discover a systemic illness first, but your dentist may recognize signs and symptoms even sooner; this is because some illnesses are first apparent inside your mouth. Eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa are good examples. Erosion of teeth and other signs may develop within months of the onset of abnormal eating behaviors.
Tell-tale Signs of Eating Disorders
Tooth sensitivity, erosion of teeth, tooth decay, dry mouth, and swollen salivary glands are common signs of eating disorders that your dentist may notice. Bulimia effects on teeth are usually related to repeated, self-induced vomiting that exposes teeth to potent stomach acids that eat away at tooth enamel. Brushing after vomiting intensifies the damage. Multiple cavities in a short period of time can be another sign that your eating disorder and teeth have crossed paths.
Who is at Risk of Developing Eating Disorders?
The vast majority of people who suffer from eating disorders are females ranging from 12 to 25 years of age. Statistics reveal that up to 10 percent of anorexia victims die within 10 years of developing the disorder. Another 20 percent die within the next 20 years, and only 30 to 40 percent achieve a full recovery. People at highest risk for eating disorders include those whose careers depend on aesthetic factors or weight such as athletes, dancers, models and actors. However, anyone can be affected. Anorexia and bulimia effects on teeth are minor compared to their impact on your general health. Improper nutrition can lead to severe and fatal damage to major organs and body systems.
Your Eating Disorder and Teeth Trouble: How Your Dentist Can Help
If you think you may have an eating disorder, discuss it openly with your dentist. Although dental professionals can’t treat the underlying cause of your condition, they can help you find treatment resources, and offer tips and suggestions to help reduce the ongoing damage to your teeth while you recover.
To get the dental care you deserve from an affordable dentist in St. Clair Shores, call Gentle Dental of St. Clair Shores today at (248) 850-1809 or make an appointment.
Gentle Dental offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in St. Clair Shores. With 8 affiliated practices throughout Michigan, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At Gentle Dental of St. Clair Shores, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at Gentle Dental of St. Clair Shores.