How Menopause Affects Your Oral Health

According to the National Institutes of Health, during menopause, women go through biological and hormonal changes, particularly in the production of their sex steroid hormone, which affects their overall health. This includes their oral health and that’s because the oral mucosa, the membrane lining the inside of the mouth, contains estrogen receptors and discrepancies in hormone levels directly affect the oral cavity. Oral health for women in the years after menopause get affected and need as much attention as other important issues. At Foothill Dental Care in Livermore, we help all our patients follow good oral hygiene habits and can help you work on any symptoms you might be experiencing from menopause.

Some of the oral problems women experience during/after menopause include:

  • The lack of saliva leading to xerostomia
  • burning mouth syndrome
  • increase in the incidence of cavities
  • dysesthesia
  • taste alterations
  • atrophic gingivitis
  • periodontitis
  • osteoporotic jaws

The burning sensation in regular oral mucosa is known as “burning mouth syndrome” and is a common thing seen in postmenopausal women. The symptoms may fluctuate from discomfort to intense pain. NIH states, “The prevalence of oral discomfort was found to be significantly higher in perimenopausal and postmenopausal women (43%) than in premenopausal women (6%).” Menopause also causes an increased risk of periodontal disease, gum infection that damages gums and can destroy the jawbone, due to hormone fluctuations. Gum disease is linked to health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s. Menopause also heightens the risk for decay because of the decrease in saliva production and because osteoporosis is common in older women, there is also a risk of tooth loss.

At Foothill Dental Care in Livermore, many of our patients come in with symptoms without having the knowledge of how aging affects their bodies. Fortunately, as a patient at Foothill Dental Care in Livermore, we provide oral hygiene information that helps combat the side effects of menopause. Our services include teeth cleaning, teeth inspections to observe degeneration, and teeth whitening. Call Foothill Dental Care in Livermore at (925) 961-5484 to schedule an appointment today.