5 Effects of Bulimia on Teeth
Eating disorders, such as bulimia, can have serious and irreversible effects on teeth. Much like the damage of fizzy acidic drinks, pop drinks and energy drinks, bulimia can affect the appearance and shape of the teeth. However, acids in the stomach can be as low as 1.5 pH (very acidic, similar to that of lemon juice or vinegar).
Effects of bulimia of teeth:
- Sensitive teeth -Stomach acid can wear away the enamel layer of the tooth. It can lead to the pulp and nerve endings becoming exposed and the teeth may then have to be crowned or coated.
- Enamel erosion – from vomiting means that food acids and the acids produced by bacteria in the mouth are not neutralised by saliva in the usual way.
- Increased chances of developing caries- makes teeth more vulnerable to acid attack and tooth decay (caries).
- Discolouration of teeth
- Dry mouth
- Rinse your mouth after being sick-. Rinsing your mouth thoroughly with milk or water.
- Wait 20 minutes before brushing
- Brush with soft bristled toothbrush
- Use non-abrasive tooth paste, rather one that will helps to protect the enamel such as Sensodyne Pronamel toothpaste
- Chew gum to help restore pH levels in the mouth, ensure that it is sugar-free gum. Chewing sugar free chewing gum after meals can help to stimulate saliva production and counter some of the effects of a dry mouth.
If you find you are suffering from bulimia, or any other eating disorders, we understand it is an uncomfortable situation to deal with. Do not be shy to discuss it with your GP, and they will assist you to seek the necessary help. Our patients often find it more comfortable to discuss these things with us, and if this is the case, we are always happy to help and point you in the right direction.