If you have been diagnosed with cancer it is important to include your dentist as part of your cancer treatment team. She can support you before, during and after therapy by preventing and helping with mouth related issues.
If at all possible see your dentist before treatment begins. As early as you can. It is important to prevent dental infections and emergencies that have the potential to delay your cancer treatment and recovery. You may need time for multiple dental visits, depending on what is found.
A professional teeth cleaning can help limit the amount of infection causing bacteria in your mouth, which is important because your immune system will likely be compromised if you have radiation or chemotherapy.
During cancer treatment about 1/3 of patients experience side effects that effect their mouths.
Mouth sores, sensitive gums and periodontal disease are common and we can usually recommend topical treatments, rinses, or medications that help.
Dry mouth can also be an issue that is both uncomfortable and dangerous for your teeth. We may recommend artificial saliva and fluoride rinses if you experience this.
Mouth acidity, especially if you are vomiting is also common. Rinsing your mouth with a glass of water and a teaspoon of baking soda throughout the day can help maintain a healthy PH balance in your mouth.
Brushing and flossing are even more important during cancer treatment. Be very gentle and use a toothbrush with extra soft bristles. Fluoride toothpaste can help prevent cavities.
A cancer diagnosis can be very scary and the last thing you are probably thinking about is going to the dentist. We hope you now understand how valuable having a dentist on your cancer team can be.
If you are in the Orange, CA area, we would love to support you through your cancer journey.
KN Dentistry (714) 633-2562
We look forward to meeting you. Call (714) 633-2562 or request an appointment online to set up your first visit. We’ll be in touch soon.