Review on March 30, 2009
It's a well known fact that as we age, our teeth and gums deteriorate and many men and women find themselves losing teeth or developing gum problems.
Researchers at the University of Buffalo have recently conducted a study which indicates that menopausal women are more likely to develop gum problems than males of a similar age. This research, collected as a follow up to a study in 1991, shows that out of 106 now post-menopausal women, over 50% of them had lost at least one tooth since they first joined the study, an obvious sign of gum problems.
The research indicates that such gum problems are caused by fluctuating levels of estrogen in the body during menopause. Gum problems develop as low estrogen levels stop calcium from being absorbed by the body, weakening bones and teeth. In the case of gum problems, the alveolar bone, from which the teeth grow, may become weak often causing women to loose teeth through what's known as periodontal disease.
The President of the American Academy of Periodontology, Dr. Vincent Iacono notes that, 'Since alveolar bone loss has been shown to be a significant factor for. (gum problems) in postmenopausal women, studies will be needed to determine possible aggravating effects of post menopause on the severity of periodontal disease. Until we know more, postmenopausal women will want to control periodontal disease to significantly reduce their risk of alveolar bone loss and tooth loss.'
These findings are an important reminder to women entering menopause to pay as much attention to potential gum problems as other menopause symptoms develop.