Research has shown that there is an association between periodontal diseases and other chronic inflammatory conditions, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Therefore, treating inflammation may not only help manage periodontal diseases but may also help with the management of other chronic inflammatory conditions.
But on the flip side, symptoms of disease may present in the teeth and mouth. The mouth is often used to diagnose, make a prognosis, treat or intervene on a number of diseases. Healthy gums should look pink and firm, not red and swollen–and your teeth should feel solid. If you have problems with your teeth and gums, it’s important to see a dentist, and possibly your general physician. Here is a list of some health problems that can sometimes show up in the teeth or gums.
Tooth Loss: Osteoporosis
The bone disease osteoporosis affects all the bones in your body–including your jaw bone–and can cause tooth loss. The erosion of the jawbone can result in tooth loss, mild facial deformities and pain in and around the temporomandibular joint, which connects the upper and lower jaws. Alveolar bone, the kind of bone around the roots of the teeth, is susceptible to the process of osteoporosis. It tends to erode quickly when calcium is depleted from the body.
Pale Gums: Anemia
Your mouth may be sore and pale if you’re anemic, and your tongue can become swollen and smooth. When you have anemia, your body doesn’t have enough red blood cells, or your red blood cells don’t contain enough hemoglobin. As a result, your body doesn’t get enough oxygen. Other symptoms of anemia, according to the National Anemia Action Council, include: feeling tired, fatigued, weak, dizzy, irritable, short of breath or depressed. With anemia, you may also have pale skin, brittle nails, chest pain, a coldness in your hands or feet, or an irregular heartbeat. Some people with anemia also have a desire to eat ice or other peculiar things.