The first appearance of asthma typically happens during childhood and involves an inflammatory response in the lungs that can result in poor development. This failure to develop fully can, in turn, lead to a lifelong struggle that brings with it an increase in certain oral health concerns. While this connection wasn’t well understood, research has continued to shed light on what causes these concerns and how to address them. Long-term treatment plans and cooperation with specialists can improve oral health concerns for asthma sufferers.
Tips for Preventing Oral Health Concerns Associated With Asthma
Those who live with asthma experience a 150% increase in cavities over those who live without the condition, according to studies published in the Journal of Asthma. Coughing, tightness in the chest, and wheezing also demonstrate increases in conditions such as bronchitis and other respiratory diseases, which can also contribute. An abundance of asthma triggers, poor immune function, and lack of access to adequate care can all these play a role in the appearance and frequency of these diseases.
Cavities and asthma, particularly in childhood, have been shown to have strong positive correlations, with bronchial asthma indicated as an increased risk in gum inflammation. Further, the swelling and inflammation associated with asthma can also make patients more vulnerable to disease. The European Journal of Dentistry published studies that demonstrated that the steroids often used to control asthma can cause oral irritation resulting in mouth ulcers and thrush.
Following these tips when treating asthma can help reduce your risk:
- Rinsing Your Mouth: Bronchodilators can irritate your mouth, so rinsing your mouth out after using your inhaler can ease symptoms. Brushing your teeth frequently will also help.
- Hydrate Often: Dry mouth is a common condition faced by asthma sufferers, often as a side-effect of breathing complications. Saliva is capable of defending against harmful bacteria, and hydration helps saliva production.
- Try New Medications: Different patients respond to medication differently, so a change in medication may help eliminate the side effects that occur.
- Treat Your Allergies: Allergies are a common component for asthma sufferers. Avoiding triggers and finding treatments that suppress your reactions can help ease asthma attacks and the correlating side effects.
- Practice Oral Hygiene: These habits not only help suppress dental decay in general but specifically help those suffering from asthma.
Consistent Dental Care Is Your Best Defense
Having asthma can be a difficult and stressful experience. Your dentists can help provide the support you need to ensure that your life isn’t impacted by oral health concerns and can treat those that appear. If you’re experiencing cavities, ulcers, gum disease, or severe cases of dry mouth, it’s time to speak to your dentist for help. Call and schedule your next meeting with them today.