Dental Problems That Could be Signs of Eating Disorders
Eating disorders can wreak havoc on all parts of the body, including the teeth and gums. In fact, a dental exam can actually reveal signs of eating disorders. Early detection can lead the way to potentially life-saving treatment. Here are the dental problems that can indicate eating disorders.
Oral Health Issues Associated with Eating Disorders
In patients with bulimia, the teeth may show signs of erosion due to frequent contact with stomach acid during vomiting. In some cases, the teeth may even look shorter because of this damage. Patients with both anorexia and bulimia may have teeth sensitivity, dry mouth and soft palate lesions related to malnutrition. Lack of food also suppresses the immune system, making cavities more likely.
Malnutrition and Oral Health Problems
Malnutrition is a key feature of anorexia and bulimia, resulting in drastic deficiencies in a variety of vitamins and minerals crucial for healthy teeth and gums. Inflammation is then more likely to strike the inside and outside of the mouth, and injuries that occur are slow to heal. In addition to proliferation of bad oral bacteria, growth of candida and other fungi may go unhampered to the detriment of the patient.
Once an eating disorder is diagnosed, patients may find recovery through education regarding their disorder and counseling to address obstacles. While fillings and crowns may suffice to repair much of the dental damage wrought by eating disorders, extraction of damaged teeth may prove necessary. Regular check-ups from our expert in dental exam in Los Angeles are among the best options to help prevent serious oral health complications from eating disorders.
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