HIV/AIDS and Oral Health
Those with HIV and AIDS have compromised immune systems and are at risk for various types of health problems. Some conditions that are often overlooked are oral health issues like gum disease in Cornelius, NC. Because the virus attacks the immune system, all systems of the body are at risk, and education and awareness can save patients from discomfort, sickness and even life-threatening disease.
Common Oral Health Problems
Individuals with HIV or AIDS often deal with the following oral health problems:
- Gingivitis (known commonly as gum disease)
- Canker sores
- Fever blisters
- Oral warts
- Bone loss around teeth
- Severe gum disease or periodontitis
- Dental caries
- Hairy leukoplakia
- Oral candidiasis, or thrush
Because of the weakened immune system of those with HIV, more than a third of them have gum disease and other oral health conditions. While a few of these conditions are just annoying or painful, they can also lead to more serious concerns and make it difficult to eat and keep your strength up.
Fortunately, most of the problems can be treated with the right approach and Drs. Haines and White are committed to providing comfort and health to their patients with HIV/AIDS. Those with these conditions have a significantly harder time fighting off infection, so gum disease in Cornelius, NC, can be especially harmful, as bacteria is often present with gingivitis and periodontitis.
How to Help
While you seek treatment for these common gum disease and oral health conditions, we have a few tips you can try to keep your mouth healthy regardless of your overall health.
- Avoid tobacco and alcohol
- Suck on sugarless hard candy or chew sugarless gum
- Sip sugarless drinks or water often
- Avoid foods high in salt
- Run a humidifier in your room at night
These things help the mouth produce saliva, which protects from decay and gum disease, helps with chewing and digestion and fights off fungi, and bacteria in the mouth. Saliva is essential to keeping your mouth healthy, so anything you can do to increase moisture will help significantly.
If you deal with painful, annoying oral health problems that are linked to HIV or AIDS, call Drs. White and Haines at (704) 274-1561 or online to schedule an appointment with a compassionate doctor committed to improving your gum health and keeping you comfortable and healthy.