Oral health complications of common eating disorders
Surely, you’ve heard that “you are what you eat.” While this may not literally be true, your dietary habits do have a profound effect, for good or bad, on your entire body including your teeth. You are probably aware that excess sugar consumption can lead to cavities, especially when coupled with lax oral hygiene. However, you may not know that frequent vomiting, poor nutrition, and consumption of certain high-acid diet foods can also be harmful to your oral health.
Coping with eating disorders
Many people find it challenging to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, especially when confronted with store isles filled with temptingly tasty and convenient, yet unhealthy, food choices. However, it can go far beyond a struggle between willpower and indulgence. It can become a serious and complex illness, involving physiological, psychological, emotional, and social factors.
If you suffer from an eating disorder, you are not alone. Millions of Americans struggle with anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder, and similar illnesses. The process of restoring and protecting your health is as complex as the problem itself. Psychological counseling, psychotherapy, support groups, nutritional counselling, and similar measures can help address the root cause. Cooperative effort with your primary care physician, dentist, and other healthcare providers is also important, to help you regain your health.
Dental symptoms of eating disorders
Some of the most common oral health complications associated with eating disorders include:
- Recurrent, sudden pain in a specific tooth
- Enamel erosion and cavities, associated with exposure to acid due to vomiting
- Dry mouth
- Enlarged salivary glands
- Cracked, dry, or red lips
- Temperature sensitivity of the teeth
- Exposed dental pulp, which can lead to tooth pain, sensitivity, and infections
- Visual changes in the length, contours, or color of teeth
- Weak, brittle teeth that are susceptible to fractures or breakage
Dr. Dietrich, of Pleasant Dental® in Dolton, is a highly skilled, experienced dentist who is known for delivering quality care. He is also more than a dentist to his patients. He is a gentle, compassionate, non-judgmental friend who is dedicated to improving your health and the quality of your life. Call us at (708) 576-1900 and arrange an appointment today.
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