We often think of conditions we experience as being isolated to whatever part of the body seems to be directly affected. If we have eczema, we have a skin problem. If we have arthritis, we have a bone problem. If we have asthma, we have a breathing problem. While this may seem straightforward and a no-brainer on the surface, the truth is our bodies aren’t quite that simple. Every part of our body is intrinsically connected to every other system, and problems that affect one may, in fact, affect several. In this article, we’re going to explore the effect that asthma has on our oral health.
Only 92% of all Americans Live A Life Unaffected by Asthma
Difficulty With Breathing Is Just One Of the Problems Caused By Asthma
We often don’t consider the interconnected nature of our respiratory system and our oral health, but it becomes somewhat obvious if you think about it. When we breathe, the air passes through our nose or mouth and into our lungs, and when we exhale, the same occurs. Every time this takes place, our oral health is potentially affected. When breathing problems like asthma are present, there’s an even higher likelihood that there are going to be consequences for our oral health. Some examples are below:
- Dry Mouth – When our airways become restricted, we often have to breathe through our mouths to get enough air. This can lead to the rapid drying of our saliva and leave our mouth devoid of saliva. Saliva is essential in protecting our teeth from decay, and no good can come of this.
- Oral Sores – Some of the medications that are used by asthma sufferers can actually cause oral ulcers. These can cause pain that makes caring for your teeth properly difficult.
- Thrush – Patients with asthma may be more susceptible to an oral yeast infection known as thrush. The lack of thrush and frequency of mouth breathing makes them particularly susceptible.
Periodontal disease, halitosis, and tooth decay are just a few of the oral health problems that can be aggravated by asthma. Those conditions explored above are responsible in part, but there are techniques that can be used to mitigate the frequency with which they’re experienced. Allergies are another major concern to asthma sufferers, as they can aggravate conditions that are already negatively affecting their oral health. Be sure to inform your dental provider if you suffer from these conditions.
In the battle against tooth decay and gum disease, saliva has an important role to play
Avoiding Oral Health Concerns Caused By Asthma
There are ways you can address the concerns caused by asthma so that your oral health is protected. The first steps are the usual in-depth and dedicated oral health routine that is followed rigorously. It should include the use of mouthwash, floss, and of course, regularly brushing twice a day. Following your inhaler with an oral rinse is another good idea, even if it’s just clear, clean water. It will also help you to promote hydration, which is good for every aspect of your health.