Managing dental health and epilepsy

epilepsy-and -dental-treatment

Managing dental health and epilepsy

March 4, 2021 6:36 pm Published by

There are many myths and misunderstandings around epilepsy and dental treatment – for example, did you know that the WHO estimates over 50 million people are living with epilepsy around the world? Dental health is just as important for epileptic patients as it is for anyone else, though the condition means some things have to be changed when it comes to dental management. Read on to find out more.

What is epilepsy?

Epilepsy is a condition that affects the brain. It means that sufferers have seizures – which can vary hugely – starting in the brain, and affecting the rest of the body. A seizure could last just a few seconds, with the person seeming a little confused. Or, they might last longer and involve muscle convulsions. It really is different for every person. The causes of epilepsy
can be different too – it might be genetic, meaning it runs in the family, or it could be a result of a brain injury.

Why is it important for epileptic patients to visit the dentist?

Epilepsy medications can have an impact on dental health. For example, some are known to cause a condition called gingival hyperplasia, which is where the gum tissue grows more than normal. Treatments can also cause dry mouth, called xerostomia, gum bleeding, and an inflamed or sore mouth known as stomatitis. It’s also thought that some medications affect the body’s absorption of vitamin D, which is essential for strong bones and teeth.

For these reasons, epilepsy and dental treatment go hand in hand. It’s important to have regular dental check-ups, so the dentist can help manage and treat any or all of these side effects.

Why else does it matter?

Those with epilepsy can also have dental problems resulting from the seizures themselves – for example, if they fall. This movement can damage teeth and gums, with tooth fractures being a particularly common impact. The jaw can also be damaged, and the tongue bit.

Just like any medical condition, it’s important that the dentist understands a patients’ background, so they can make the right diagnosis and treatment. They can also plan preventative treatment to try and avoid damage in the first place.

What should dentists think about?

From the dentists’ point of view, patients with epilepsy do have different needs. Practically speaking, the best dentist in Dubai will spend time making sure their patient is OK, for example in making sure the light only shines in the mouth – not the eyes – when examining an epileptic patient. They should also check if the right medications have been taken, to avoid an unexpected seizure there and then. Taking the time to understand a patient, and avoid triggers such as stress, is vital to making the trip to the dentist a success.

Drs. Nicolas & Asp have many years of experience in helping patients with many different medical conditions. The patient plays a part in dental management too! That’s because maintaining the very best dental health can help avoid many problems from happening.

Brushing teeth well and flossing, having a healthy diet, and seeing the dentist every six months, are all great steps in keeping teeth and gums in great condition. This is especially important, considering that side effects like dry mouth can make tooth decay and gum disease much more likely to

Treatment options for Patients with Epilepsy

If teeth have been damaged and need fixing, a dentist at Drs. Nicolas & Asp will make a recommendation that specifically suits an epileptic patient. For example, they may suggest a tooth implant or permanent bridge, rather than something that is removable or made of porcelain or ceramic, simply because of the risk of choking and of breaking.

If you have epilepsy, then it’s a good idea to find the best dentist in Dubai for you, and make regular appointments so they can build up a good understanding of your condition – and help you keep your dental health as good as possible.

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