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How Eating Disorders Affect Your Teeth

June 11, 2015 Guest Author

You may not know it, but eating disorders affect your teeth. Eating disorders take their toll on your health. Maybe you’re feeling that you’re always fatigued or that you get sick more often than not. Perhaps your skin’s gotten dry or your hair’s starting to fall out. But another impact of eating disorders is on your teeth. Eating disorders that go untreated could cause a number of issues with your oral health such as gum disease, erosion of tooth enamel and even loss of teeth.

What Are Eating Disorders?

An eating disorder is a condition wherein you concentrate quite unusually on what food you take in. For instance, if you have anorexia, you’re thinking so much about your weight that you only eat a small amount of food. If you have bulimia, you’re thinking too much about your weight as well, but you try to keep it under tabs by forcing yourself to vomit or by making use of laxatives right after you’ve partaken in large servings of food. Meanwhile, binge eating is an eating disorder wherein you eat large amounts of food but in secret, most of the time.

How Eating Disorders Affect Your Teeth

Eating disorders can negatively affect your teeth. Learn more about the effects of eating disorders on your teeth.But how do eating disorders affect your teeth, you might ask? Here are three examples:

  1. Anorexia – This eating disorder could result in you experiencing severe malnutrition since your body isn’t getting the nutrients it needs in order for it to properly function. This lack of vital nutrients, vitamins and minerals could cause you to have bleeding gums, dry mouth, periodontal disease as well as tooth decay. If you’re not getting enough calcium and vitamin D, you might also develop osteoporosis, which, in turn, is going to cause your jawbone’s tissue to deteriorate, leading to a loss of teeth.
  2. Binge eating – Even though you might be getting the much needed nutrients your body needs when you binge eat, it’s likely that you take in a lot of sugary as well as starchy foods, which happen to be acidic. They can then de-mineralize the enamel of your teeth, causing them to decay
  3. Bulimia – Frequent vomiting is what mostly characterizes bulimia and what it does is that it exposes your teeth to your stomach’s corrosive acids, thus wearing away at the enamel of the tooth. As a result, you teeth experiences discoloration, they get a chalk-like texture and will be prone to decay. In addition, bulimia affects the production of your salivary glands and this can lead to gum disease and even tooth decay.

How To Deal with Effects on Teeth of Eating Disorders

You don’t need to get worried, though, since these can be remedied. First off, you need to seek help from your doctor, your therapist or from an eating disorder treatment program. Once you’ve gotten your eating disorder in check, you could then go to your dentist in order to proceed with the proper treatment of any gum disease you might have.

In the case where your teeth have gotten worn down, discolored or have severely decayed, you dentist could treat them and even improve on their appearance as well as their function.

This post was written by:

Eating disorders can negatively affect your teeth. Learn more about the effects of eating disorders on your teeth.Alan McGee is the community manager of Smile Logic Ortho. You can find him on Google+.

To be a guest author on the Your Mental Health Blog, go here.

APA Reference
Author, G. (2015, June 11). How Eating Disorders Affect Your Teeth, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, July 17 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/yourmentalhealth/2015/06/how-eating-disorders-affect-your-teeth



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