As you may already know, birth control can affect your mood and weight, but you may not have known that this medication can also affect your oral health. Before starting birth control, it is important to know that there is a link between oral health and birth control.
Birth control is made up of hormones that are used to prevent fertility and, in turn, prevent pregnancy. When birth control is taken, it leads to hormonal changes occur in women. With these hormonal changes, some women experience oral health problems. These hormonal changes can affect the blood supply to your gums and may also affect your body’s response to toxins that have been created due to plaque buildup.
Research has shown that women who take birth control that contains progesterone may have issues with inflamed gums caused by the body’s reaction to the toxins created by plaque. Luckily, newer types of birth control contain a lower concentration of hormones, so women are less likely to experience symptoms like gum inflammation when taking them.
Birth control pills are also connected to decreased natural estrogen and temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ). Because birth control pills affect natural estrogen levels, they also affect TMJ, and in combination with the compression of the TMJ and the low natural estrogen levels, this can lead to inflammation.
Birth control can also increase the risk of a dry socket if you have a tooth removed. This is a painful condition that occurs when blood clots form after an extraction.
If you are on birth control or plan to start taking it, it is important that your dentist knows that you are taking birth control and what type of birth control you are using. If you are experiencing any side effects related to your oral health, your dentist, along with your physician, can help you manage the symptoms to preserve your oral health.
It is important to provide this information to your dentist since some antibiotics can lower the effectiveness of your birth control. Be sure to brush and floss daily, maintaining a regular oral care routine to help you keep a healthy and happy smile.
Contact South Hills Dental Arts to schedule an exam today!