Sjögren’s Syndrome: An Autoimmune Disorder With A Terrible Effect On Oral Health

Are your eyes and mouth chronically dry? Do you have pain in your joints? Are you feeling fatigued every day? These problems are some of the most common symptoms of Sjögren’s syndrome, an autoimmune disorder which attacks the moisture-producing glands in the body.

Sjögren’s Syndrome And The Body

The body needs water in order to survive, so when parts of it do not receive the necessary amount of water, problems develop. Sjögren’s syndrome can damage several parts of the body, including:

  • Blood vessels
  • Mouth
  • Pancreas
  • Lungs
  • Eyes
  • Thyroid
  • Joints
  • Skin
  • Nerves
  • Kidneys
  • Liver

If you are experiencing the symptoms of Sjögren’s syndrome, then it is important to see your dentist and physician as soon as possible to discuss treatment options.

Sjögren’s Syndrome And The Mouth

Sjögren’s syndrome can be especially detrimental to the health of your mouth because of a reduced saliva flow. Saliva is the body’s natural defense against cavities and also protects the mouth from infection by:

  • Helping to break down food
  • Washing away food debris
  • Neutralizing acids that cause decay
  • Bringing in disease-fighting and tooth rebuilding substances

Speak with your dentist about what you can do to prevent the damage of a dry mouth. They may recommend using saliva substitutes, drinking more water, chewing on sugar-free gum, and placing a humidifier in your home.