Dental Health Info Article

Save Your Bones, Wreck Your Teeth?:

Dental health and bone health are forever intertwined. It is for that reason that medical experts prescribe oral bisphosphonate for osteoporosis treatments. Research indicated that this hugely popular medication may action contribute to dental problems, specifically the inability of dental implants 'taking' in the long hall.

Human bones comprise an organ system that stores minerals, produces blood and assists with hearing. The jaw bone is only one part of the entire system and it is vital for communication, nutrition and is the area that supports dental health. The jaw bone is comprised of the articular bone of the lower jaw and the quadrate and the dynamic duo is what teeth are attached to. When the skeletal system experiences deteriorating health, dental problems including tooth loss and gum recession can arise and when it does a prescription of medication may provide the solution. Osteoporosis is one such condition often treated with prescription medications, however research has shown that the pills given to help prevent bone thinning negatively impacts the security of dental implants.

About Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis has the misconception of being a disease only impacting old ladies, however the condition marked by bone loss and decreased bone density can impact anyone regardless of age or gender. Statistics indicate that 40 million Americans have already been diagnosed with the condition or are considered high risk because of their low bone mass.

Osteoporosis is a condition where bone density is lowered courtesy of depleting calcium supplies; after that occurance the odds of getting a bone fracture are gained. Although the condition primarily impacts hips, spines and wrists, it can affect any bone in the body including the jawbone. Since that body part is where teeth are supposed to be firmly anchored, the relationship between osteoporosis and dental health is a fragile one.

Osteoporosis Treatment

Bones are alive and comprised of two specific cells, the osteoblasts create new bone matter and osteoclasts are responsible for bone deterioration. Combined, the cell's efforts allow for bone remodeling. As time progresses and aging kicks into full gear, osteoclasts will win the battle and bones enter into destruction mode. It is during this time period that osteoporosis can make bones frail and brittle.

Currently there is no way to prevent the natural deconstruction process so instead medical professionals Science has yet to develop a way to prevent the natural destruction of bones, but individuals can take certain steps to on their own including eating a nutritious diet (based on the Government Nutrition Plate) and exercising. In some cases, a prescription may be in order.

Oral Bisphosphonate, a Double Edged Sword

Oral bisphosphates are a class of drug specifically targeting bone loss and readily prescribed for osteoporosis sufferers. The treatments have been found to prevent hip fractures in those with fragile bones. It has also been found to have positive effects in cancer patients. However research has found that the medication may actually cause more harm than good in those with dental implants.

The Department of Periodontology and Implant Dentistry conducted clinical evaluations on the matter in 1997 and late 2004. They found that women who had failed dental implants and have taken the prescribed medication were almost three times more likely to develop that specific dental problem.

Individuals are encouraged to seek the opinion of a professional dentist if they are having a problem with their dental implants or suspect that they are at risk for bone damaging conditions.  That visit will allow a dentist is to use tools that can see changes in bone (such as X-rays). Individuals looking to find a dentist can count on 1-800-DENTIST to assist in the task. Osteoporosis patients looking to find a great dentist to assist on the task can call 1-800-DENTIST to get connected to a dentist in their area.