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Understanding Lyme Disease & Dental Health

Understanding Lyme Disease & Dental Health
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Understand First How To Help Yourself

Understanding the root cause of Lyme disease could be the key to understanding how the infection works in the body. A Lyme disease infection can lead to more problems than one, all different illnesses that could develop, at a delay, in the body. Delayed development can be as soon as a couple of months or as long as a few years from its first infection. Individuals who are treated early on may avoid further issues. Unfortunately, considering the nature in which it develops, early detection and treatment are not always possible.

Lyme-Time.com delves into the facts surrounding the bacteria, Borrelia, which can lie dormant in the body's tissues before it becomes active and causes an outbreak of Lyme Disease within the body.

Anyone who has experienced Lyme Disease can attest to the challenges that come along with it. Symptoms of the late stage include cognitive problems (inability to remember or concentrate). Other symptoms include arthritis, chronic fatigue, and many have even experienced losing facial muscle control. But, can and how does Lyme disease affect dental health?

Is there a connection between Lyme disease and dental complications?

There is still much to be learned about the connection between Lyme disease and dental health. This is primarily because the symptoms at the forefront of this illness are rarely associated with dental health. However, regardless of how small a connection is, there is still one between the disease and oral health. Lyme disease can lead to TMJ or temporomandibular joint dysfunction concerning dental health.

The connecting joint of the jawbone and skull is the temporomandibular joint, and it is responsible for the opening and closing functions of the mouth. When affected by TMJ, it can cause extensive jaw pain in the joints and muscles. An individual with Lyme disease can experience similar pains as TMJ in the jaw, presenting difficulties with mouth functions.

How does Lyme disease affect tooth extractions? Bacteria from Lyme disease can be transient. Because of this, the condition can affect dental health. The initial mite size infection can travel from the origin of the bite into the mouth and thrive in the teeth dentin. The area is known as dentin tubules made up of hollow canals. The dental infrastructure serves as the perfect breeding ground. And can feed on other bacteria that live in root canals in different mouth areas that have previously extracted teeth.

Having Lyme disease and being unaware of the infection can have adverse effects. Tooth extraction can lead to unintended exposure to the root bacteria, Borrelia, and trigger a flare-up. As well, reportedly, studies show that a tooth extraction can yield much more challenging symptoms than those experienced by an individual with chronic Lyme disease.

A particular study revealed the aftermath of a patient treated for Lyme disease. It is referred to as PTLDS or Post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome. Pain attacks the joints and muscles. Patients who suffer from this also experience headaches, other neurological loss, and even sleep disorders. Symptoms have worsened to the point of hospital admittance to the ICU. Please note: The above information is meant to inform you, and it should not serve as a measure to avoid necessary dental work. Deferred or neglected dental hygiene can cause other related issues.

How Is Your Mouth Affected By Lyme Disease?

The effect of Lyme disease is not limited to TMJ-like symptoms, painfully limiting jaw function, and it can affect your mouth health overall. Other symptoms have resulted from Lyme disease, including pulpits and dry mouth. Pulpitis develops in the mouth due to an untreated decayed tooth, and the decay affects the dental pulp resulting in pain. This condition can also lead to the saliva glands becoming inflamed.

Another condition found in patients with Lyme disease is burning mouth syndrome. The condition is chronic and synonymous with its name. Patients who have experienced burning mouth syndrome reportedly experienced burning in the mouth in areas such as the tongue, lips, roof of the mouth, gums, cheeks, or the entire mouth. The sensation is likened to a hot liquid burn in the mouth.

The exact cause of burning mouth syndrome isn't clear, but it is referenced as a neurological issue presented by the bacteria in patients with Lyme disease.

What Is A Lyme-Literate Dentist?

The role of a dental health professional who is familiar with Lyme disease stems further than their practice. Those familiar with the illness may recognize symptoms in patients and can further investigate or begin treatment at the earliest possible time. However, considering that some of the symptoms are not directly reflective of oral health, they could very well be overlooked. The best possible way for a dental professional to recognize the symptoms for what they are is to be well informed of their patient's social, health, and symptoms history. Gathering this information requires thorough medical probing when speaking with their patient and an effective collaborative effort with their primary healthcare provider.

Lyme disease in the later stages can be pretty uncomfortable, from painful flare-ups to crippling symptoms. Life with Lyme disease can be challenging, but through prompt and effective treatment, those who encounter the infection may weaken the probability of developing post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome.

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Frequently asked questions

Who Will Require A Full Mouth Reconstruction?
Patients who have broken teeth, infected gums, or feel jaw pain, which is causing discomfort and affecting oral health, should contact their dentist to see if they are a fit candidate for a full mouth reconstruction.
What Should I Expect In a Full Mouth Reconstruction?
Mouth Reconstruction after thoroughly examining a patient as suitability for the procedure is on a case-by-case basis. However, if you have two or more of the following dental issues, you may require a full mouth reconstruction procedure.

Missing teeth due to decay or trauma, Broken or fractured teeth, Worn out teeth due to acid or tooth grinding, Receding gums or gum disease, Continuing headache, and jaw and muscle pain.
Dr. Amy's Experience With Full Mouth Reconstruction
Dr. Khajavi has extensive experience in full mouth reconstruction and helping patients attain healthy, confident and dazzling smiles. Dr. Khajavi has won multiple awards as a dentist, holds advanced dental degrees and also offers other major dental procedures including cosmetic dentistry, treatment for neuromuscular problems, dental cleaning, and TMJ.

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