Eating disorders are serious and should be dealt with alongside the right specialists. But even after recovery, many people who’ve experienced eating disorders find they have other health issues to contend with. Many of those issues are related to the mouth and dental health. We’re going to take a look today at how and why eating disorders are so often associated with dental health issues. So read on if you want to find out about this issue, as well as what to do about it.
Types of Eating Disorders
There are lots of different types of eating disorders that can impact people in different ways. The ones that are most commonly associated with health problems in the mouth are anorexia and, in particular, bulimia. Both are very serious illnesses in their own right, aside from the implications for the mouth, of course.
Anyone experiencing the signs and symptoms associated with these eating disorders should seek immediate help. Doing so will ensure you stop the problem in its tracks, avoiding a range of other health issues, including those that might impact your oral health.
Eating Disorders Are Often Associated with Nutrient Deprivation
One of the major ways in which eating disorders impact the mouth is through nutrient deprivation. Your body, and your mouth, requires nutrients in order to stay healthy. But when you’re not eating as much food as your body needs, the body gets deprived of those nutrients.
By depriving your body of the vitamins and other nutrients it needs, it’s not able to repair itself and teeth erosion, as well as dry mouth and mouth sores all become more common. That’s one of the major reasons why eating disorders and oral health problems go hand in hand.
Stomach Acid Damages the Teeth
For people who’ve been through bulimia, the impact on the mouth can be even greater. This eating disorder is associated with binge eating combined with purging, which often comes in the form of forcing oneself to vomit. As a result, the teeth can be severely impacted.
When we vomit, it’s not just the food that comes up, we also expose our mouth, teeth and throat to stomach acid as well. Anyone who has forced themselves to vomit on a regular basis will be exposing their teeth and mouth to a lot of excess stomach acid, which in turn erodes the teeth.
If you’ve been through an eating disorder and you’ve seen the impact that the problem can have on the mouth and teeth, it’s a good idea to see a dentist about how the issue can be fixed. There are lots of very helpful dental procedures out there that you can take advantage of, both in terms of the health of your mouth and teeth, as well as the aesthetic and cosmetic side of the equation.
If you’re looking for a cosmetic dentist who can help you with your dental health issues after recovering from an eating disorder, we’d be more than happy to help you with that. Simply get in touch at the soonest opportunity and book an appointment at our practice.