Did you know that your body’s hormones have an impact on your oral health? Teens going through puberty are more likely to have gum disease or cavities. Pregnant women are more prone to these as well. Women going through menopause will also notice some changes in their teeth and gums, but these changes can also occur when hormone altering prescriptions are administered.
Hormonal Birth Control
Most women do not realize that they are putting hormones in their body whenever they take their birth control pills. Even if you have alternate birth control such as a Depo shot, an Implanon implanted for long-term control, or newer IUDs, you are still getting a healthy dose of hormones to prevent pregnancy.
Not all birth control methods use hormones to make them more effective, but most prescription birth control does contain hormones or medications designed to alter hormone levels in the body. If you’re not sure if your birth control is hormonal based, talk to your prescribing doctor.
What Hormonal Changes Do to Your Teeth and Gums
Whenever you take hormonal birth control, you will notice some changes to your teeth and gums. First, your teeth and gums will become more sensitive, which can be handled with sensitivity formulated toothpaste and mouthwash.
After being on birth control for a few weeks or months (everyone is different), you will probably notice that your gums are visibly swollen and likely uncomfortable. Your gums may also bleed when you brush or eat certain foods. While on birth control, your mouth is more sensitive to irritants, which can include spices and seasonings in the foods you eat.
If you start to notice additional problems like cavities, loose teeth, or increasing gum pain and bleeding, you should visit your dentist for care and instruction. Contact us today to make your appointment.