You may only have one body, but it is actually composed of many different systems that are functioning alongside each other. When one of these systems isn’t quite working as it should, the effects can ripple throughout your entire body—even your mouth. When the thyroid gland in the endocrine system is not producing hormones as it should, it can contribute to an increase in the appearance of tooth decay and gum disease.
This butterfly-shaped gland that resides in your neck is responsible for two key hormones that are responsible for energy production. When their levels are too high or low, symptoms can appear in all of the other systems of your body. Common issues include:
- Dry, flaky skin
- Increased sensitivity to cold
- Brittle nails
- Unexplained weight gain or loss
When your thyroid isn’t working properly, your body is prone to both inflammation issues and at higher risk for infection. These factors along with an impaired ability to heal combine to create optimum conditions in your mouth for tooth decay and gum disease to thrive. That’s why it is so important to have a comprehensive oral health evaluation if you have recently been diagnosed with a thyroid condition. If gum disease has already set in, you may be a candidate for a Laser Gum Therapy (LANAP) to restore the look and health of your gums.
In addition to synthetic hormones that are available from through your physician, dietary changes can help improve your thyroid function. Eliminating sugar and process foods and including fish, nuts, fresh fruits and vegetables, and seaweed in your diet are simple changes that you can make to take control of not just your thyroid health but your dental health also.
At Anthem Periodontics and Dental Implants, we can help protect your oral health that the damage of an improperly functioning thyroid can cause to your teeth and gums. To learn more, schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified periodontists today.