Going through menopause can have a real impact on your smile! The hormonal changes that come with menopause can make your gums more sensitive and vulnerable to gum problems like gingivitis and periodontitis.
Because menopause can lower estrogen levels and affect your bone density, you might be at higher risk of losing teeth. To make matters worse, if you smoke or drink too much alcohol, you might also be at increased risk of oral cancer. Don't worry though, there are things you can do to help keep your mouth healthy during menopause!
Menopause can have several impacts on oral health, including:
- Dry mouth: Decreased estrogen levels during menopause can lead to decreased saliva production, causing dry mouth. This can increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
- Gum problems: Menopause can also increase the risk of gum problems, such as gingivitis and periodontitis, due to hormonal changes and reduced immunity.
- Tooth loss: Decreased estrogen levels during menopause can also increase the risk of bone loss, including loss of jawbone and teeth.
Oral cancer: Menopause can also increase the risk of oral cancer, particularly in women who use tobacco or consume alcohol.
There are things you can do to help keep your mouth healthy during menopause!
- Brush and floss regularly
- Drink plenty of water
- Visit the dentist regularly
- Avoid tobacco and excessive alcohol consumption
- Consider hormone replacement therapy
Make sure to brush and floss regularly, drink plenty of water, visit the dentist often, avoid tobacco and excessive alcohol, and talk to your doctor about hormone replacement therapy. By taking care of yourself and your oral health, you can help prevent any problems from popping up during menopause. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your healthcare provider.
You got this!
- Bhardwaj, A., & Bhardwaj, S. V. (2012). Effect of menopause on women's periodontium. Journal of mid-life health, 3(1), 5–9. https://doi.org/10.4103/0976-7800.98810
- Pizzo, G., Guiglia, R., Licata, M. E., Pizzo, I., Davis, J. M., & Giuliana, G. (2011). Effect of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) on periodontal status of postmenopausal women. Medical science monitor : international medical journal of experimental and clinical research, 17(4), PH23–PH27. https://doi.org/10.12659/msm.881700
- WebMD - "Menopause and Your Oral Health": https://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/menopause-oral-health
- The Huffington Post - "Menopause: The Oral Health Connection": https://www.huffpost.com/archive/in/entry/why-women-need-to-pay-extra-attention-to-their-oral-health_b_9371766