Those who suffer from asthma often experience related chronic respiratory conditions such as inflammation and mucus buildup. Especially during childhood, these complications can present increased risks to the immune system, making bronchitis and other chronic conditions more common in these patients. Oral health conditions also appear more frequently for them, as the lungs and mouth have direct connections that can foster these problems as time goes on.
Asthma-Related Conditions Commonly Found In Oral Health
The oral health concerns that are experienced by asthma sufferers are not a direct result of the condition itself but rather as an extension of the symptoms asthma brings. The increase in inflammation and medications used have been found to exacerbate existing issues and can even cause concerns of their own. Below we have a collection of the most common concerns that are faced by those living with asthma. Understanding the risks will empower you to take steps to counteract them.
- Oral Sores – Ulcers and other mouth sores can occur from the repeated use of the medication for asthma. Rinsing frequently after using the inhaler can help.
- Dry Mouth – In addition to the dry mouth caused by their medication, asthma sufferers often mouth breath more than other patients. This results in saliva drying, removing important protection against tooth decay.
- Gum Disease – Inflammation increases our vulnerability to gum disease and can lead to gingivitis turning into periodontal disease.
- Halitosis – Halitosis, also known as bad breath, can result from dry mouth, gingivitis, etc.
- Thrush – Thrush is an oral yeast infection that is uncommon in older children and adults but often appears in infants and the elderly. Those who suffer from asthma may also experience cases of thrush due to the complications mentioned above.
While the increased risks of oral health concerns cannot be ignored, asthma medication is essential to treating this respiratory condition. Learning how to handle these increased risks is critical, as demonstrated by studies in the European Journal of Dentistry confirming that they can have a serious impact on the oral health of those suffering from asthma. The cause is the interaction of the bronchodilators, the patient’s immune system, and the microbiome that exists in our mouths.
Start Fighting Back With An Appointment With Your Dentist Today
Speaking to your doctor and your dentist about the medications that you use to control your condition is an essential first step. Communicating with your health care professionals is essential, so consider scheduling a meeting for a consultation with your dentist immediately. During this visit, you’ll be able to discuss your concerns, receive a dental exam, and formulate a plan to move forward in addressing your oral health concerns as related to your asthma. They’ll also help you learn how to care for your teeth between visits.