Oral problems are not uncommon for people with HIV. Many of the problems that occur are treatable with improved dental care and medication. If you are HIV-positive, here is what you need to know about potential dental problems.
Why Are Dental Problems More Common?
Due to the human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV, your immune system is weakened. As a result, your body has more trouble with fighting off infections, such as gum disease. You are more susceptible to dental problems, such as mouth sores, fever blisters, thrush, and hairy leukoplakia.
You can even experience symptoms, such as dry mouth and difficulty swallowing. In some instances, the symptoms will disappear on their own, but you might have to receive treatment for the others.
Why Is Dental Care Important?
Good dental care is important for everyone, but since you have a compromised immune system, it is imperative that you maintain good dental health. Bacterial infections from your gums and teeth can end up in your bloodstream and lead to an increased risk of experiencing a heart issue.
When you take care of your dental health, you are also helping to keep your overall health at its best.
What Can You Do?
One of the most important things you can do is to regularly see the dentist. The dentist can help pinpoint problems before they develop and also provide you with regular advice on how to fight other problems that you are experiencing.
In addition to this, you need to take your HIV medications on time. Some of the medications are designed to help boost your immune system and can help with fighting off dental infections.
If you do suffer from HIV medication-related dental problems, talk to your dentist. Problems, such as dry mouth, can be treated through a number of measures, including prescription medications.
You should also conduct weekly examinations of your mouth. Look for any unusual changes. If you notice any problems, contact your dentist. He or she can determine if there is cause for concern and offer a treatment solution, if necessary.
As a final measure, ensure that you are keeping up with the basics of good hygiene. Brush and floss on a regular basis. Cleanings from your dentist during checkups can help ensure your gums and teeth are in good condition.
You should never allow a dental problem to go untreated. Regular visits to the dentist can not only result in proper treatment, but recommendations that can help you preserve your oral health.Share