Eating disorders, such as bulimia and anorexia, can have a significant impact on the health of your smile. One of the primary effects eating disorders have on oral health is increasing the chances of developing enamel erosion. However, there are other considerations as well. For example, malnourishment can make your smile more susceptible to damage and infection. People consuming insufficient nutrients also put their smile at increased risk for gum disease and decay. Bulimic patients can cause further damage to their smile because frequent vomiting exposes teeth to stomach acids. This combination of insufficient nutrition and acidic exposure can deteriorate your teeth’s enamel and open the door to a variety of oral problems.
Other dental effects of eating disorders include:
- Gum and other soft tissue bleeding
- Chronic dry mouth
- TMJ from degenerative arthritis
- Redness, scratches, or cuts from purging, especially on the upper surface of the mouth or ‘soft palate’
- Enlargement of salivary glands
These effects can cause serious issues with your oral health; however, our team at Prosthodontics of the Carolinas is here to help. Dr. Ralph Hoffmann provides a wide variety of services designed to strengthen your smile and provide any necessary dental restoration. Fluoride treatment can help strengthen teeth and promote remineralization. If a tooth or multiple teeth have been lost, our experienced prosthodontist may recommend an implant or other restorative treatment to replace them. Other treatments might include rinses, prescribed medications, special toothpastes, and more.
Each patient is unique, and we are committed to helping you find the personalized plan that will help you bolster your oral health and help you enjoy the smile you deserve. Please contact our team today to learn more about the oral effects of eating disorders and to schedule your next appointment. We look forward to meeting you!