A toothache is a pain that could be sharp, throbbing, passing or constant, in and around a tooth. One of the most common sources of a toothache is a decaying tooth. You may think that tooth decay is only caused by poor oral hygiene; but did you know that tooth decay could be a sign of other medical conditions? Here are the most common diseases that can cause tooth decay.
- Type II Diabetes
Type II Diabetes, also known as adult-onset diabetes, is a medical condition wherein the body doesn’t use insulin the right way resulting in high blood sugar levels. Studies have shown that people with Type II Diabetes are also at high risk of tooth and gum disease. When the sugar and starches from the food you eat interact with the bacteria inside your mouth, plaque will form on your teeth and wears it away.
- Oral cancer
Oral cancer is a type of cancer that includes cancer of the lips, tongue, cheeks, and other parts of the oral cavity. Early signs of cancer may be a sore in the mouth or an infection in the gums that does not go away. Since the oral cavity is unhealthy, your gums become more susceptible to infections and your teeth become weaker against acid and bacteria.
- Eating Disorders
Bulimia and Anorexia Nervosa are two of the many eating disorders that can cause tooth decay. These two conditions are characterized by an extreme fear of gaining weight. Individuals with Bulimia and Anorexia Nervosa may binge-eat, then purge everything in an unhealthy way. When this happens, your body will not get the right amount of nutrients to maintain a healthy body — including your oral health; making your teeth and other parts of your body weak and prone to infections.
You may have noticed it, but when you are stressed you get to develop unhealthy habits such as grinding and clenching your teeth. Aside from that, stress also weakens your immune system. The more you grind and clench your teeth, the more vulnerable it becomes. The constant wear and tear will result to tooth sensitivity and pain, worn or decayed teeth, and may even lead to developing Temporomandibular Disorder (TMJ).
- Autoimmune Disease
If you have an autoimmune disease such as HIV/AIDS and Sjogren’s syndrome, your mouth will feel very dry since the condition attacks the glands in our body including the salivary gland. The saliva plays an important role in keeping your teeth in good health by washing away sugars and starches from the food you eat. If the production of saliva in your mouth is altered, you will be at higher risk of developing oral cavities.
When to see your dentist?
A regular dental checkup is essential in evaluating and maintaining the good health of your teeth and gums. Your dentist is capable not only in treating oral health problems but also in recognizing emerging medical issues that may affect your oral health.